GALLIA COUNTY, Ohio — An Ohio mother has been sentenced in connection with the 2020 fatal shooting of her toddler daughter, officials said.
According to WSAZ and WTAP, Gallia County Common Pleas Court Judge Margaret Evans sentenced Joyceann Louise Ruane, 25, of Crown City, to life in prison without the possibility of parole on Thursday, nearly four months after Ruane pleaded guilty to charges of aggravated murder and having weapons while under disability.
Authorities said Ruane shot and killed the 16-month-old girl July 23 following a dispute with the child’s father, WTAP reported.
In a statement Thursday, Gallia County Prosecuting Attorney Jason D. Holdren said he was “grateful” that Ruane “will serve the rest of her life behind bars.”
“It is unconscionable that a parent, who has a duty to care, nurture and protect their children, would take the life of a helpless and innocent child,” the statement read.
Gallia County Sheriff Matt Champlin called the incident “the most horrific and tragic investigation” of his career.
“It is simply unimaginable to grasp the reality that this parent possesses a level of pure evil to take the life of their young child as brutally as this mother did,” Champlin said in a statement.