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Mother Charged With Manslaughter After Allegedly Drinking, Getting High And Falling Asleep On Infant Daughter

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) -- A northern Minnesota mother is facing manslaughter charges after allegedly getting drunk, smoking meth, and taking a sedative before falling asleep on her 5-month-old child, killing her.

Sarah Declusin, 28, of Embarrass, is charged via summons in Kanabec County with second-degree manslaughter and child endangerment in connection with the January death of her daughter at a home in Mora, court documents show. If convicted of both charges, Declusin faces up to 15 years in prison.

Sarah Declusin
(credit: Kanabec County)

According to a criminal complaint, the child's father came home in the morning hours of Jan. 22 to find Declusion sleeping on the couch. He went to give her a kiss and noticed his daughter pressed between Declusin and the couch.

Declusin told investigators that the child's father started screaming, saying: "You are squishing my baby."

When first-responders arrived, they found the child lying on the floor, pale and not breathing, the complaint states. Paramedics brought the child to a local hospital, where she was pronounced dead. An autopsy concluded that she died of positional asphyxia.

Declusin initially told investigators that someone must have come into their apartment and moved the child from her bassinet while she was sleeping.

However, a neighbor reported to child services that two days after the girl's death Declusin came to her door "messed up" and recounted that before her daughter died she had been drinking, smoking meth and had taken Valium, a sedative. She reportedly told the neighbor that when she woke up the child was wedged between her legs.

Declusin reportedly told her neighbor, according to the complaint, that the child's death "must have been meant to be" and that everything was going to be alright. The neighbor told officials that they were extremely concerned for Declusin's other children. Another neighbor told investigators that Declusin was telling her people around her not to talk to law enforcement.

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