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Decatur Woman Pleads Guilty To Manslaughter In Son’s Death

BENTONVILLE (KFSM) — A Decatur woman pleaded guilty Tuesday (April 25) to manslaughter in connection with the death of her infant son, according to court documents.

Molly Sullivan, 22, has a sentencing hearing set for June 27 in Benton County Circuit Court. Manslaughter is a Class C felony, which carries a penalty of up to 10 years in prison and a maximum fine of $10,000, according to Arkansas Code Annotated 5-10-104.

Benton County deputies went to Sullivan’s home on Coon Hollow Road in Decatur on Oct. 28 for a report of a deceased 2-month-old boy, according to a probable cause affidavit.

They found pressure marks on the baby’s body indicating he had been lying face down on his stomach when he died.

Sullivan lived in a metal storage building adapted into living quarters with two other boys and their father, the affidavit states. The building had electricity, but no running water.

Sullivan told police she woke up around 11:30 a.m. Oct. 28 to find her son was blue and purple, so she called 911, according to the affidavit.

Detectives noted several inconsistencies in Sullivan’s statement, and she eventually admitted to putting her baby to sleep on his stomach in a playpen and putting a pillow over him, according to the affidavit.

Sullivan told investigators she had not slept in days and was frustrated with the baby being fussy, but she had not intended to kill him.

Under state law, a person may commit manslaughter if they recklessly cause the death of another person.

Sullivan wasn’t listed Saturday (April 30) as an inmate at the Benton County Jail.