Iowa resident Taylor Blaha, 24, received a 50-year prison sentence after admitting to the drowning of her newborn after a home delivery. Following her guilty plea to a second-degree murder charge, Blaha’s stipulated sentence ensures she must complete 35 years before parole eligibility.
The baby’s father, 31-year-old Brandon Thoma, had earlier pleaded guilty to charges including child endangerment leading to death.
The couple, in their attempt to quiet the infant’s cries, submerged her in a bathtub. Their subsequent actions involved hiding the baby’s remains in a backpack and discarding it in a forest.
Inquiries unveiled Blaha’s methamphetamine consumption on the day of her delivery, November 16, 2022. Fearing custody loss of their elder child due to child services, they opted for the tragic decision. Prior concerning behaviors included internet searches about miscarriage inductions.
Thoma aided Blaha during the drowning of the infant. Surveillance video captured Thoma’s actions disposing the baby’s body. Though authorities got wind of the incident on November 22, the baby’s remains are yet to be located after expansive searches. Blaha’s charge was reduced to second-degree murder after her plea.
Thoma awaits his sentencing on September 1, after a plea deal.