A 32-year-old woman convicted of shaking her son said Wednesday she takes full accountability for causing him serious harm.
A judge sentenced Rebecca A. Bowers to serve 364 days in the county jail and 2½ years of probation for aggravated domestic battery.
McHenry County Judge Sharon Prather told the woman she understands the kind of pressure and stress Bowers must have been under caring for four children with little help, but that didn’t excuse shaking the 4-month-old boy July 7.
Hebron police arrested Bowers on aggravated domestic battery charges stemming from serious injuries with which her son was brought to hospital.
Originally, Bowers lied to first responders and hospital employees about how her son was injured, prosecutors said in court.
The boy continues to see a neurologist as a result, and it is unknown how severely the shaking could affect him in the long term.
“I wish it didn’t happen,” Bowers said in court.
The mother accepted a negotiated plea March 2, and she pleaded guilty to the felony charge, which carries a punishment of as many as seven years in prison.
McHenry County Assistant Public Defender Richard Behof said Bowers acted “at a time of frustration,” and he noted that his client suffered from possible postpartum depression at the time.
He went on to say that Bowers’ significant other “was of little to no help” in caring for the children.
Any future contact with minors, including her own children, will need to be supervised, Prather ordered.
Bowers also will be required to take parenting and anger management classes.
It was not clear where Bowers’ children will stay, or what the young boy’s condition is.