By LIBBY CUDMORE • Special to www.AllOTSEGO.com
COOPERSTOWN – In just over three hours, a jury found Kimberly Steeley, 27, Decatur, not guilty in the June 2018 deaths of her infant twins, Bonde and Liam.
Steeley’s attorney, Andrew Van Buren, made the case that the babies died of SIDS – Sudden Infant Death Syndrome – in part, because they had come home from the hospital too soon. Both babies were preemies; Bonde, was just over 4 pounds when she died, and that Liam, who died 11 days later, was 5.14 pounds.
On Friday, March 6, Steeley testified that although she did fall asleep in bed with both of them on the nights they died, at no point was her body, bedding or clothing obstructing their airways.
District Attorney John Muehl argued that Steeley was told not to co-sleep, and presented evidence that she was using drugs during her pregnancy and after the twins were born.
“Although I disagree, I respect the jury’s decision,” he said after the verdict was announced. “It was a difficult case, but given that there were two deceased children, it was a case that had to be tried.”
Van Buren and Steeley both declined to comment after the proceedings.