A former Mississippi police officer was sentenced to 20 years in prison this week after she was tried in the death of her 3-year-old daughter, who died while her mother had sex with her superior officer back in 2016.
Cassie Barker plead guilty to culpable negligence and manslaughter in the case as part of a plea deal with the prosecution.
I can’t bring Cheyenne back. Quite frankly, my heart goes out to both of you, both families. Every parent’s nightmare is to bury their children. I’m can’t imagine how you would feel when that would be brought about by something you did or didn’t do,” judge tells Cassie Barker. pic.twitter.com/knDqy5qYso
— Justin Mitchell (@JustinMitchell_) April 1, 2019
3-year-old Cheyenne Hyer was killed when the car she was left in overheated. Barker allegedly left Cheyenne in the backseat of her patrol car for an astonishing 4 hour period while she engaged in sexual acts with a superior officer from the Long Beach Police.
Police said that while the air conditioning was reportedly on while Cheyenne sat in the backseat, there was no cool air blowing through the vents. By the time that emergency personnel reached the child, the temperature inside the car had reached nearly 110 degrees and that the little girl was unresponsive.
The judge overseeing the case came down hard on the neglectful actions of the former officer.
“You left your own flesh and blood in that car while you were in an air conditioned house to have sexual relations,” Harrison County Circuit Judge Lawrence Bourgeois said, scolding Barker for failing to “protect and serve” as both a police officer and a mother.
Both Barker and her supervisor Clark Ladner were fired just days after the child passed.
Cheyenne’s father, Ryan Hyer, asked for the court to instill the full 20-year maximum sentence on Barker, arguing that her death could have easily been prevented and that it was Baker’s own selfish decisions that led to the tragedy.
He has filed lawsuits against the Long Beach Police Department and Mississippi Child Protective Services for negligence and dereliction of duty in regards to Cheyenne’s death.
“Every time I close my eyes, I picture her suffering, and then I picture her laying in this coffin,” Ryan Hyer said Monday. “I still see her smiling and laughing in my head, and I would assume that smile and laughter turned to pain and suffering in that instance.”
According to reports, Barker had previously been investigated for yet another instance in which she had left the child unattended in a car.
— Margaret Baker (@margar45) April 1, 2019
“I don’t know what I could ever do to you that could be worse than what you’ve already experienced,” Judge Bourgeois told her two weeks ago during her guilty plea. “You will forever be entombed in a prison of your own mind.”
Barker is currently 3 months pregnant.