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EL DORADO, Kansas — It’s a case that started more than a year ago and today an emotional closure for family members in the courtroom.
Investigators say 18-month-old Jayla was severely abused and died from her injuries last March.
Jayla’s mother Alyssa Haag is headed to prison on involuntary manslaughter charges for the death of her young daughter.
“The court hearby sentences the defendant to a term of 31-months in the custody of the sec. of corrections in the State of Kansas,” said Chief Judge David Ricke, Bulter County Judicial Center.
Alyssa Haag appeared visibly emotional as the judge handed down her sentence.
Haag was originally charged with first degree murder, but pleaded guilty to involuntary manslaughter when a plea deal was reached.
Investigators say 18-month-old Jayla was severely abused under her mother’s watchful eye.
“I can’t imagine what it’s like to live everyday with the loss of a baby daughter,
said Judge Ricke. “A loss that you have to live with. I can’t imagine the pain.”
Autopsy reports show the little girl had multiple bruises and burn scars over her body and had lost 6 teeth.
She was in the hospital, but was taken off life support last March.
“Alyssa failed Jayla in the worst way possible,” said Stacy Louis, Jayla’s paternal great aunt. “She has robbed my family as well as her own the joys of watching a beautiful girl grow up.”
“A lot of the acquations against Alyssa about her being a monster are not true,” said Alyssa Haag’s mother. “Alyssa needs help. She needs counseling to help her with the demons she has.”
Haag had nothing to say to the judge or to the immediate family, but the judge had something to say before the convicted mother was taken to prison.
“The reason why you’re here facing sentencing for a felony involuntary manslaughter charge is because you didn’t do what you needed to do as a mother to protect and care for your baby because of that she died,” said Judge Ricke. “A true tragedy.”
Haag’s then boyfriend Justin Edwards was also charged in the death, but the charged was dropped last year.
Prosecutors tell KSN News at this time there is a pending investigation against Edwards.