Minneapolis, MN – A Minneapolis home day-care operator who pleaded guilty to hanging a toddler she was caring for from a noose, before running over two people in her attempt to flee, was given a mere 10 months’ probation as her sentence.
Nataliaa Karia, 43, pleaded guilty to attempted murder in February for hanging the boy inside her home, the Minneapolis Star Tribune reported.
Prosecutors said Karia tried to kill the 16 month old on Nov. 18, 2016 by hanging him from a noose in her basement and leaving him there while she fled in her minivan, FOX News reported.
The toddler survived only because a parent who was dropping off a child happened to see what was going on and removed the noose from the boy’s neck.
"She hung (him) by the neck with a homemade noose in her basement in Minneapolis. This case is about that little boy who very well could have taken his last breath in that basement," Assistant County Attorney Christina Warren said at the sentencing, according to KARE.
Joseph Sabir was dropping off his daughter at the home when Karia told him she had done something bad as she was running from the house, according to the Minneapolis Star Tribune.
Sabir said he heard crying and ran to the basement where he found the toddler hanging from a noose made of girls’ tights tied to a pipe. He rescued the child, whom police said recovered after hospitalization.
Karia fled from the home in her minivan, and rear-ended a car. When the other driver got out to check the damage, Karia pulled into traffic and dragged him for 10 blocks, the Minneapolis Star Tribune reported.
Next, she struck a 29-year-old bicyclist with her van. That victim suffered broken bones and had to have a rod surgically implanted in his leg so that it wouldn’t have to be amputated.
Then Karia then hit another car driven by a pregnant woman.
After that, she drove to a freeway overpass and threatened to jump. A Good Samaritan held her down until police arrived and took her into custody.
In her defense, Karia told the court how her husband had abused her and her children since they came to the United States from the Ukraine in 2006.
Karia told the court that when she was pregnant, and learned it was going to be another daughter, her husband punched her in the stomach for not having a son.
She read a statement in Russian that was interpreted to English, according to the Minneapolis Star Tribune.
"I don't want to push this terrible crime onto my husband. I just want to explain what happened," she said, according to the Minneapolis Star Tribune. "Your Honor, my children need me… Give me a chance to resume a normal life."
The parents of the victim toddler gave emotional victim impact statements in court on May 23.
“Based on prior actions and history, I would not feel comfortable with simply probation. Because everybody that has testified today has said they trusted her with their children. Well you’re fine and you’re trustworthy and you’re caring until you’re not,” Claire Booth said.
Hennepin County District Judge Jay Quam said the case was one of the most difficult he had ever adjudicated.
The Minneapolis Star reported that the judge agreed with Karia’s doctors that she was “a low risk” to reoffend.
“There are no easy answers here,” Quam said, according to the Minneapolis Star Tribune.
He ordered Karia to undergo mental health treatment, and to be subject to electronic home monitoring for at least two months.
The judge said she could live with her adult son but could not have unsupervised contact with her two, seven, and 10-year-old daughters, or other minors, the Minneapolis Star Tribune reported.
The prosecution argued that Karia could not be properly supervised outside of prison, or get the care needed to restore her mental health, and asked for a minimum sentence of 13 years in prison.
Judge Quam also handed down a 183 month stayed prison sentence, which would go into effect if she violated her probation, KARE reported.