By Nicole Darrah, ,
Published July 17, 2018
A day care owner who pleaded guilty to attempted murder for trying to kill a toddler by hanging him from a noose in her basement was sentenced Monday to probation.
Nataliia Karia, 43, was sentenced in Hennepin County court in Minnesota to 10 years, the Star Tribune reported. She also was sentenced to mandatory mental health treatment, and will be on electronic home monitoring for two months.
In November 2016, a father was dropping off his son at Karia’s home for childcare, a criminal complaint stated. She led him to the basement, where he saw a toddler hanging from a noose. The father released the 16-month-old and fled. The child survived.
Karia reportedly fled the scene in her minivan, and while doing so, hit a pedestrian, another driver and a bicyclist — for which she pleaded guilty to criminal vehicular operation.
She was taken into custody when police found her preparing to jump off a highway overpass, according to the newspaper.
Judge Jay Quam said, in agreement with doctors, that Karia was “a low risk” to reoffend, calling her actions “the perfect storm of factors unlikely to ever be repeated.”
Karia’s defense attorney Brockton Hunter said Karia, who has spent 20 months in jail since the incident, and will get credit for her time already served, will leave jail no later than Tuesday.
Karia promised to follow probation, and said in court she was glad no one died. Her attorney said Karia's actions were "aggravated, if not wholly caused, by abuse (from) Nataliia's husband."
Karia's son, Denys, testified in May that his mother suffered mental and physical abuse both in Ukraine — where she came from in 2006 — and America, KARE reported. Denys said his mother had suicidal thoughts the week leading up to the November 2016 incident, but her husband wouldn't allow her to get help.
Prosecutor Christina Warren pushed for prison time. Warren raised doubts that Karia could be properly supervised outside of prison, and receive the care she needs to restore her mental health.
In a court filing, Warren wrote that instead of being the person most able and willing to protect the boy from harm, Karia "left him hanging by a noose around his neck in her basement."
The defense argued for probation, pointing out that Karia already has served time in jail and lost her child care career.
Karia, in addition to her court-ordered mental health treatment and home monitoring, will live with her adult son, but cannot have unsupervised contact with her daughters — ages two, seven and 10 — or other minors.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.