BELLEFONTAINE, Ohio (WDTN) – Brittany Pilkington, the Logan County mom who smothered two of her infant sons and a four-year-old son, pleaded guilty in Logan County Common Pleas Court on Tuesday, Nov. 19 and will serve 37 years to life.
She will serve seven years for involuntary manslaughter and 15 years to life consecutively on two murder charges.
Pilkington, who will be eligible for parole in 37 years, was originally charged with three counts of aggravated murder. After part of her confession was thrown out by a judge earlier this year, the first murder count was changed to involuntary manslaughter in the plea deal.
Judy Grimes wrote a statement for the court during sentencing and was read to the court by her husband Dave. The couple are extended family of Pilkington and are raising her daughter.
“She’s had to deal with a lifetime of heartache and fear,” Grimes said. “Recently when her fish died, she asked if she was going to be a bad mom when she grew up.”
Grimes said his niece was robbed not once but three times of ever having siblings.
“I can’t pretend to speak for the three boys who lost their lives to their mother,” Logan County Prosecuting Attorney Eric Stewart said. “No sentence will reflect what she has done.”
Defense attorney Kort Gatterdam said Pilkington had suffered brain damage in her right frontal lobe, which he said was confirmed during a medical scan. Gatterdam said the damage was due to lead ingestion as an infant and led to developmental delays as well as emotional and anxiety issues.
Gatterdam said Pilkington suffered sexual abuse by her eventual husband Joseph, who fathered her four children. He pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor sex charge in 2016 dating back to his relationship with Brittany before they were married.
“Imagine being developmentally delayed but neither the parents, schools or social agencies helped you,” Gatterdam said. “Then your mother brings this monster into your life, who started grooming you at age 9 and you suffered sexual abuse that would repeat itself hundreds of times in her life.”
Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost’s office sent a press release following the sentencing and plea deal.
“A guilty plea cannot undo the heartless acts this woman committed against defenseless children – she does not deserve to be called a mom,” “Yost said in the release. “But locking her up will at least guarantee she won’t be able to repeat this evil.”
Pilkington had been in jail since the death of her third son in 2015.