Mother of Toddler Killed by Babysitter Goes to Prison

DA: Heather Schoepflin failed to seek care for child immediately

Tom Puckett
March 19, 2019 - 4:15 pm

Buffalo, NY (WBEN) A Delevan mother will spend a year in jail after failing to get care for her son, beaten by a babysitter. 28-year-old Heather Schoepflin of Delevan has been sentenced by Marilla Town Justice David Wyzykowski to one year in jail.

Prosecutors say Schoepflin failed to seek medical care for her 2-year-old son. The toddler, Ethan Bigham, suffered visible bruising and other injuries while under the care of his babysitter Devon VanDerWege.

In May 2018, VanDerWege received a determinate sentence of 20 years in prison for the crime of Manslaughter in the First Degree.

Schoepflin pleaded guilty to one count of Endangering the Welfare of a Child, a Class “A” misdemeanor, in August 2018. She pleaded guilty, as charged, to the highest sustainable count.

“This defendant could have sought medical care for her little boy, but chose to ignore the visible injuries he had suffered. I hope that everyone affected by this tragedy feels that justice has been served by Ms. Schoepflin receiving the maximum possible sentence for this crime,” said Erie County District Attorney John Flynn.



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