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October 31, 2013

Appeal of manslaughter conviction dropped

A local woman has dropped her planned appeal of the prison sentence she received on a charge of manslaughter, for having left her infant son in a vehicle last December.

Sheryl Ann Jackson of Greenville did not tell physicians she had done so for two days, which may have helped result in the child’s death.

Jackson pleaded guilty in July to one count of manslaughter in connection with the death of 6 month-old Tytus Hoskins.

Following an October 4 punishment hearing, a jury in the 196th District Court returned a sentence of 11 years in the Texas Department of Criminal Justice-Institutional Division.

Earlier this month, Judge Steve Tittle appointed an attorney to represent Jackson on her appeal of the case.

But the Sixth Court of Appeals in Texarkana Wednesday issued a notice indicating it had received a motion from Jackson’s attorney, asking that the appeal be dismissed.

“The motion was signed by both Jackson and her counsel in compliance with the Texas Rules of Appellate Procedure,” according to Justice Jack Carter with the appeals court. 

Manslaughter is a second degree felony, punishable by a maximum sentence of from two to 20 years in prison and an optional fine of up to $10,000.

Jackson had asked the court to consider probation as a sentence in the case, whereas prosecutors had filed a motion asking the court to allow the introduction of extraneous offenses and previous misdemeanor convictions on Jackson’s criminal record.

Jackson previously pleaded not guilty to a charge of murder, which accused Jackson of “intentionally or knowingly committing or attempting to commit an act clearly dangerous to human life” — namely leaving Hoskins unattended in a vehicle for more than two hours on Dec. 1, 2012 — and/or “not informing doctors for two days that Tytus Hoskins had been left in the car unattended, that caused the death of Tytus Hoskins.”

During a July 15 hearing, Jackson agreed to plead guilty to the charge of manslaughter, admitting she acted recklessly in causing Hoskins’ death.

The Greenville Police Department reported Hoskins began to succumb to exposure and the consequences of exposure on the day when the temperature rose to 81 degrees.

Jackson retrieved the child and sought medical attention, allegedly telling emergency personnel the child felt hot, but not informing them Hoskins had been left inside the vehicle.

The boy was transported to the Hunt Regional Medical Center and then later by air ambulance to a Dallas hospital where he died.

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