Death penalty debated for woman in baby’s burning death

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NATCHITOCHES, La. (AP) — (11/13/19) Prosecutors still are debating on whether to pursue the death penalty against a woman accused of burning her girlfriend’s baby to death, at the girlfriend’s request.

The Alexandria Daily Town Talk reports prosecutors debated the move Tuesday at hearing for 27-year-old Felicia Marie-Nicole Smith. Smith has been indicted on a charge of first-degree murder in the death of 6-month-old Levi Cole Ellerbe, whose mother now faces the death penalty on the same charge.

Prosecutors say Hanna Nicole Barker asked Smith to kill Levi and then waited a few hours before calling 911 to report that her son had been kidnapped. Smith is accused of dumping Levi in a ditch, coating him in gasoline and setting him ablaze. Levi was found with severe burns covering 90% of his body and later died.

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