Woman pleads guilty to child abuse charges

RENO - A Reno woman whose 9-month old son drowned in a bathtub after she left him unattended and fell asleep has pleaded guilty to child abuse causing death and drug possession.

Sentencing for Heather Marie Patterson was set for Nov. 29, about three weeks after her scheduled delivery date for another baby.

She faces up to 20 years on the child abuse charge and one to four years for drug possession.

Patterson, 24, told the Reno Gazette-Journal she was sleep deprived from using drugs when she left her two sons in the bathtub on May 5.

She awoke to hear her 21-month old son screaming for help. That's when she found her youngest son, Joshua Linden Missey, floating face down in the tub.

The child was taken off life support two days later.

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