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Mother of 4-year-old who died from fentanyl allegedly on lollipop sent to state prison by Chester County judge

WEST CHESTER — The Common Pleas judge overseeing the cases of two parents of a 4-year-old child who died from fentanyl intoxication accepted the recommendation of a prosecutor who asked that the mother, Amanda Owens Moore, be sent to state prison for her punishment, although at a shorter term than her husband.

First Assistant District Attorney Erin O’Brien on Monday asked Judge Thomas P. “Tip” McCabe to sentence her to a term of two-to-four years in state prison for the 2022 death of her son. McCabe agreed.

Amanda Moore mugshot
Amanda Moore(Courtesy of Chester County District Attorney’s office)

In doing so, McCabe rejected the plea of Moore’s attorney, Alexander Silow of West Chester, to keep his client in Chester County Prison, even if it meant structuring a sentence that would see her serve close to two years behind bars.

McCabe said he took into consideration the fact that Moore had denied to investigators that she had been abusing drugs at the time of her child’s death, and that she refused to cooperate with the detectives in determining how the boy had died.

Moore’s husband, 37-year-old Jason Moore, last month was sentenced to five to 10 years in state prison after pleading to charges of endangering the welfare of a child, a first-degree felony, and involuntary manslaughter, a second-degree felony.

O’Brien cited Amanda Moore’s lack of a prior record in her recommendation for a two-year minimum sentence, as opposed to her husband, whose record was significant..

The death of the 4-year-old was called a “devastating tragedy due to the defendants’ complete failure as parents,” by former District Attorney Deb Ryan in announcing the arrest of the Moores. Their arrests followed a monthslong investigation by Chester County Detectives, led by Detective Gerald Davis of the D.A.’s Child Abuse Unit.

An arrest affidavit filed in the case indicates that the child, who is not identified by name, most likely came in contact with a baggie of fentanyl that Jason Moore brought into the home the night before, after buying heroin and fentanyl in Coatesville. Both of the parents were regular users of the drug, according to the criminal complaint, despite Amanda Moore’s repeated denials that she did not use the drugs.

According to court records, there were seven other children living in the couple’s home at the time of the 4-year-old’s death.

According to the D.A.’s Office, on Nov. 29, 2022, at approximately 10:48 a.m., the Caln Township Police Department responded to a 911 call for a report of an unresponsive 4-year-old child at a Thorndale residence in the 3500 block of East Lincoln Highway in Caln.

At the scene, township police observed Jason Moore performing CPR on the unresponsive child. Medics arrived shortly after, took over medical care, and transported the victim to Children’s Hospital (CHOP) in King of Prussia, where he was declared dead.

Investigators learned that both defendants had left the residence at approximately 7 a.m. that day, leaving the victim and a younger sibling in the care of a 13-year-old forced to stay home from school. The 4-year-old was reportedly sick and needed attention.

Investigators did not find any signs of injury, bruising or scratches and it appeared that the victim was deceased for some time prior to being found by his older brother at approximately 10:37 a.m.

After an initial autopsy by the Montgomery County Coroner’s Office, there were no obvious signs of the cause of death. Detectives returned to the residence to collect items that were identified as coming in contact with the victim.

Among the items collected were two clear water bottles containing unknown liquids, a blanket, and a half-eaten lollipop. The lollipop was retrieved from the trash can inside the couple’s bedroom. Each item was tested and in January 2023, the stick portion of the lollipop was found to be positive for trace amounts of fentanyl.

To contact staff writer Michael P. Rellahan call 610-696-1544.

Source: Berkshire mont

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