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6-Year-Old's Mother Charged With Negligent Homicide, Says Westchester DA

Kathleen Dymes
Kathleen Dymes Photo Credit: Courtesy of Westchester County District Attorney's Office

CROTON-ON-HUDSON, N.Y. -- Kathleen Dymes was charged Wednesday with three counts, including criminally negligent homicide, in the death of her 6-year-old daughter, Lacey Carr, according to the Westchester County District Attorney's office.

Dymes, 51, was also charged with endangering the welfare of a child, a class A misdemeanor, and criminal possession of a controlled substance, a class A misdemeanor.

Dymes surrendered to Croton police Wednesday morning and was in a wheelchair with a brace on her right leg.

Criminally negligent homicide is a class E felony. Dymes, who is currently in a rehabilitation facility, faces up to four years in prison if convicted. Dymes was released on $25,000 bail.

Dymes and Lacey were found by Lacey's father, David Carr on April 5. Dymes and Lacey lived at the home with Dymes' father, Kevin.

According to the indictment, a search warrant was executed and in the second floor bedroom where Lacey's body was discovered, police observed an open bottle of alcohol along with numerous over the counter, prescription and illegal drugs strewn about the room. Two handwritten notes were recovered from the bedroom.

Lacey had 10 times the normal amount of Benadryl and 10 times the normal amount of morphine in her system, according to prosecutors. Heroin was found in the house, according to prosecutors.

Dymes tried to kill herself with an overdose of medication, according to prosecutors. While at Phelps Hospital, she fell and broke her foot.

"This defendant failed in her most basic role as a mother and caregiver: to ensure the safety and well-being of her child," said District Attorney Janet DiFiore. "As a former nurse, she could know only too well the dosage and interactions of the drugs her daughter had ingested that lead to her death,” said District Attorney Janet DiFiore.

Peter Tilem, Dymes' attorney, said Lacey's death was a tragic accident.

"The district attorney had a very hard time articulating that what my client is alleged of doing was criminal negligent and caused her death," Tilem said. "The theory seems to be that a 6-year-old getting a hold of prescription medication amounts to criminally negligent homicide. That's a very scary suggestion for parents."

Tilem said Dymes shouldn't have to face criminal charges.

"Kathleen Dymes lost her daughter as a result of a terrible accident," Tilem said. "Her life will never be the same.

Dymes' next appearance in court is Sept. 29.

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