- Associated Press - Friday, April 13, 2018

ELIZABETHTON, Tenn. (AP) - A Tennessee woman has pleaded guilty to failing to protect her 3-year-old son from the man who authorities say killed him.

The Johnson City Press reports 27-year-old Ayonjaleea Phillips was sentenced to 18 years in prison Thursday on a charge of aggravated child endangerment of a child under 8.

Phillips’ son, Ja’Kari LaDrell Phillips, died in November 2016 from severe injuries. His stepfather, Demetrius Deshawn Covington, is scheduled to go on trial for first-degree murder in September.

Ayonjaleea Phillips said Covington used a wooden hair brush to beat the boy, and made him stand in a corner for hours without sitting or bathroom breaks. She said she tried to intervene and urged Covington not to punish her son so hard, and that he had promised to be less strict.

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Information from: Johnson City Press, http://www.johnsoncitypress.com

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