LOUISVILLE, Ky. – A Fort Campbell, Kentucky, woman was sentenced today by Senior United States District Judge Thomas B. Russell to 18 years in prison, followed by a three year period of supervised release, for the first degree manslaughter, resulting from child abuse, in the death of an infant whom she was babysitting in December 2013, announced United States Attorney John E. Kuhn, Jr.
There is no parole in the federal system.
“This sudden violent act ended with tragic consequences,” stated U.S. Attorney John Kuhn. “While nothing we can do will ever bring this innocent child back, we have strived to achieve justice for this family.”
Sheilla E. Linares, 22, previously admitted that on December 3, 2013, while on Fort Campbell Military Base, a special jurisdiction of the United States, located in Christian County, Kentucky, she provided babysitting service for an infant child, T.R.C., Jr. Three other children also were in the residence under Linares’ care that day, her two young children and T.R.C., Jr.’s three-year-old sister, A.C. No other adults were present in the residence during the day.
Between 3:00-3:30 p.m. Linares intentionally caused serious injury to T.R.C., Jr. Linares later admitted to law enforcement that it took her less than a second to realize that what she had done was completely wrong. She admitted to then putting the baby in the swing at which point, the infant became unresponsive. Linares stated that she then called the baby’s mother and 9-1-1.
An ambulance transported T.R.C., Jr. to the emergency room at the Army hospital located on Fort Campbell Military Base. His condition deteriorated and he was transported to Vanderbilt. While being treated at Vanderbilt, medical personnel noticed bruising that appeared on both of his shoulders as well as his left upper arm. Medical tests and examinations revealed bilateral subdural hemorrhage (approximately 25 ml total volume), focal subarachnoid hemorrhage, cerebral edema, bilateral optic nerve sheath hemorrhage, subdural blood throughout the spinal cord, and cervical nerve root hemorrhage. T.R.C., Jr.’s injuries were a result of Linares’ abuse. Those injuries led to his death.
On December 7, 2013, T.R.C., Jr., was determined to have insufficient brain activity to sustain life, and pronounced dead. The amended autopsy report of the Tennessee medical examiner lists the cause of death as blunt force injuries of the head and neck.
Assistant United States Attorney Jo E. Lawless is prosecuting the case. The Federal Bureau of Investigation, with assistance from the United States Army Criminal Investigation Division, and the Clarksville Tennessee Police Department, conducted the investigation.