The Texas grandmother who pleaded guilty this week in the horrific death of her toddler grandson has been sentenced.
A jury on Thursday sentenced Patricia Flores, 44, to 57-and-a-half years in prison after she admitted to the murder of 2-year-old Lyfe Flores, who was found to have severe burns on the lower half of his body.
Flores told police that the boy had climbed into a tub of hot water she was using for cleaning when he sustained the burns. She said she didn't take him to a hospital because as a nursing assistant she believed she could treat the burns herself at home.
Six days after the bathtub incident, doctors said Lyfe arrived to the ER near death and later died.
On Thursday, just over a year after Lyfe's death, his loved ones were given the opportunity to address Flores in court.
"Instead of buying toys for him to play with, we buy toys to put at his headstone," Lyfe's step-grandmother Kim Hamilton said, according to WFAA. "Instead of taking him for pictures with the Easter bunny, we are here looking at pictures of autopsies."
Indeed, family members were subjected to some startling testimony during the sentencing phase.
Officer Heather Hudson with the Haltom City Police was among the first at the scene and recalled in court how nearly all the skin had been burned off Lyfe's feet.
"There were black spots, like dead skin or infection. And his genitals and buttocks were burned very badly," Hudson testified.
Physician Catherine Moore was in the ER when Lyfe arrived.
"When you see a patient who’s about to die, they have a look to them. And I've seen several," Moore testified. "This young man had that look."
By the time Flores called 911, the boy had reportedly gone into shock and was found suffering from internal bleeding, missing teeth and severe burns, some of which had been wrapped using Maxi Pads.
On Monday, Flores pleaded guilty to felony murder. She faced a sentence between five and 99 years.