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NY socialite Gigi Jordan gets 15 years for killing autistic 8-year-old son

NEW YORK -- Gigi Jordan, a former pharmaceuticals executive and socialite convicted in the death of her autistic 8-year-old son, was sentenced Thursday to 18 years in prison, reports CBS New York. That's seven years less than the maximum she faced.

The prosecution asked Judge Charles Solomon to hit Jordan with the maximum sentence, and her defense team argued for leniency.

In a jailhouse interview with CBS New York in October, Jordan said she killed her son with a poisonous cocktail of drugs, vodka and juice in the luxury Peninsula Hotel in midtown Manhattan in February 2010 out of "a mother's love."

Jordan assembled several of the city's top attorneys who said she was in the throes of fear and panic, based on her belief that her son was the victim of emotional physical and sexual abuse, inflicted on him by predators in his life.

Those accusations were never substantiated in court, but Jordan told the station she believed her son, Jude Mirra, faced a fate worse than death should she die.

"I wanted him to be safe and at peace at any cost," Jordan said.

In the interview, she said her biggest regret was her failed suicide on the night she killed her son.

"That was my intent, was to die that night," she said. "I had no reason to live after Jude's death."

"I died the night Jude died. My soul died that night," she said.

In November, the jury accepted her claim that she acted during a state of "extreme emotional disturbance" and found her guilty of first-degree manslaughter, not the top count of murder.

The station reports that jurors spent days reviewing evidence that showed what Jordan's state of mind was at the time she killed her son Jude. The jury found that she had reason to believe that her ex-husband was going to kill her and that the boy's biological father, who she claimed sexually abused Jude for years, would gain custody of the child. She claimed she killed her son to spare him from a lifetime of "unimaginable suffering."

Trained as a nurse, Gigi Jordan went on to launch companies that administer drugs to patients in their home. After making an estimated $40 million, she left her career to travel the country seeking medical answers for her son.

Prosecutors alleged Jordan could not fix her son's autism so she killed him. But in court, Jordan insisted Jude was never a burden.

Jordan admitted on the witness stand that she gave Jude a fatal cocktail of prescription drugs in February 2010 at the Peninsula Hotel. Dr. Edward Barbieri, a forensic pharmacologist, told jurors he found extremely high levels of Xanax in the child's blood -- 19 times what an adult would take. Barbieri said Jude also was fed a lot of Prozac and another sedative that reduces blood pressure, which was given to him at a deadly level of 20 to 40 times that of an adult dosage.

Despite the fact that Jude was nonverbal, Jordan testified that the boy learned to communicate with her by typing on a laptop computer and BlackBerry. That was how, she said, he told her about the repeated abuse he endured, which had bizarre satanic elements - from being forced to drink blood and kill animals to being zapped with electricity.

The boy also typed a message saying he wanted to die, Jordan testified.

Jude's father denies the allegations of abuse and has never been charged. Her ex-husband has denied all her allegations and has sued her for slander.