WEST JORDAN — A West Jordan mother who pleaded guilty to child abuse in the death of her 13-day-old boy has been referred to a treatment center once a spot there becomes available.
On Wednesday, 3rd District Judge William Kendall ordered Maria Elena Sullivan, 26, to complete an unspecified inpatient program at Odyssey House and wear an ankle monitor while there. She is currently in the Salt Lake County Jail.
Sullivan was arrested in October upon checking out of a hospital in Georgia after making “concerning statements” to hospital employees, authorities said. A background check revealed a $1 million warrant for her arrest on Salt Lake County charges of murder, a first-degree felony, and three counts child abuse with serious bodily injury, a second-degree felony.
Sullivan’s newborn baby died Sept. 17 of severe brain injury and had lost weight since birth, with a fractured arm, broken rib and an injured spinal cord, charging documents state. When her boyfriend, Dylan James Kitzmiller, 21, became angry, he grabbed, slapped and bit the child, charging documents say. Prosecutors say Sullivan did not seek medical care for the infant or try to stop the abuse.
Kitzmiller told investigators that Sullivan and his mother, who lived upstairs, “yelled at him for being too rough with the baby and that he and Sullivan used heroin in the presence of” the baby on the day the newborn died.
In March, Sullivan pleaded guilty to two of the child abuse charges. In exchange for her pleas, the murder charge and the third child abuse charge were dismissed. Sentencing is scheduled for June 5.
Kitzmiller, who is not the child’s biological father, also faces the same murder and child abuse charges.