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Woman gets life sentence for sitting on, smothering girl

PENSACOLA, Fla. — A Florida woman has been sentenced to life in prison for killing her 9-year-old cousin sitting on her as a form of punishment.

The Pensacola News Journal reports that 66-year-old Veronica Green Posey was sentenced Friday after jurors convicted her of first-degree felony murder.

Prosecutors say Dericka Lindsay had suffered horrific beatings from Posey, and Lindsay’s adoptive parents, James and Grace Smith. Officials say Posey sat on Dericka for more than five minutes in October 2017, causing the girl to die from lack of oxygen.

Posey’s attorney said the 320-pound (145-kilogram) woman was trying to help the Smiths and didn’t intend to hurt Dericka.

James Smith was previously sentenced to 10 years for his role in Dericka’s death. Grace Smith still faces charges but is currently mentally and physically unfit to stand trial.

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Information from: Pensacola (Fla.) News Journal, http://www.pensacolanewsjournal.com

The Associated Press