LUBBOCK, Texas — The Lubbock mom who admitted she slammed her 1-year-old son to the floor was found guilty and sentenced to 50 years on Wednesday.
Madison Rodriguez, 23, was found guilty of aggravated assault – domestic violence, a first-degree felony charge with a minimum penalty of 5 years and a maximum penalty of 99 years to life.
Her trial began last week.
During the sentencing phase, the defense argued for probation.
“[Rodriguez] was an 18-year-old girl who didn’t have a home,” the defense said. “She had dreams, still has dreams. Don’t you think that that’s someone that deserves the low range?”
The prosecution then asked the jury a question, “do you trust this defendant to go out into this world and have more children?”
Prosecutors also told the jury, “7,200 minutes … 120 hours … 5 days, that’s how long baby Mason suffered. She let that child’s last few days spent in absolute misery. This is not a probation case.”
In June 2015, Emergency crews responded to the report of a child not breathing in the 1800 block of East 25th Street. Rodriguez’s son, 1-year-old Mason, was later pronounced dead.
Police interviewed her afterward, and a detective asked, “What happened to Mason?”
Rodriguez said, “I slammed him on the floor because I was mad, and I didn’t mean to.”
Rodriguez also told police, “Instead of slamming him on the floor like I did, I wish I would have changed my actions. I took my anger out on an innocent child.”
Rodriguez was in a relationship with Charles Dillon Flournoy at the time.
He was also interviewed by police. He said he dropped Mason accidentally twice in the days before the baby died. Police pressed Flournoy on his answers.
Flournoy did not want to get Rodriguez in trouble but eventually said, “There was one time when she covered him up and stepped on his head, and there was another time when she threw him down hard.”
Flournoy was charged with injury to a child and his case was still pending as of Wednesday. Flournoy has been free on bond. Rodriguez has been in jail since June 2016.
In closing arguments, prosecutors said Rodriguez was willing to spend $651 on a wedding cake but not take Mason to the doctor.
The defense quoted an expert witness who said it’s not for sure that that Rodriguez caused the injuries that killed Mason. The defense also said that police interrogation techniques led to false confessions.
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The jury was given three different legal options to convict Rodriguez (differing degrees of severity). They chose the most serious form of aggravated assault that was available to them.
Initially, Rodriguez was charged with capital murder, but prosecutors re-indicted her in January on a lesser charge of aggravated assault.
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