POSTED: Wednesday, April 15, 2009 - 4:54pm
UPDATED: Thursday, February 25, 2010 - 11:33am
A Laguna Vista mother sentenced to ten years in prison for the death of her newborn baby is free, tonight...That's all because Judge Arturo Nelson decided she served enough time, and gave her whats called shock probation.
After only spending seven months in jail for her baby's death, Jaqueline Reich is now out on shock probation.
In February, Reich plead guilty to the lesser charge of injury to a child for the 2005 death of her baby girl.
Prosecutors say, Reich killed her newborn an then stuffed the infant's body in a suitcase.
Judge Arturo Nelson sentenced her to ten years in prison for the crime.
He now, let her free just two months later, on what's called shock probation.
So what is shock probation? It's when a judge decides the entire experience of going to trial, and being behind bars will 'shock' the convicted person into good behavior.
Shock probation gives defendants the opportunity to receive probation, after only spending a short time in jail.
It's considered a privelage, not a right.
News Center 23 spoke with Reich's defense attorney, Ed Cyganiewicz.
He says, he thinks the judge gave her shock probation, because she has no prior criminal history, and the baby's death was not on-purpose.
Cyganiewicz says Reich feels remorseful, and thought her baby was still-born.
Autopsy results, he says, show that the baby's heart was in bad condition.
Reich spent seven months in jail, a judge can grant shock probation anywhere from 30 days to six months.
Under shock probation, Reich will be placed under strict supervision for the next ten years.