Daycare owner who abandoned kids to go tanning gets 21 years

An Oregon woman who pleaded guilty to drugging and abandoning children at her daycare so she could go tanning last year was sentenced to more than 21 years in prison Friday.

January Neatherlin, 32, was accused of drugging seven kids — including a six-month-old — with melatonin at her illegal daycare named Little Giggles in Bend last March.

A teary Neatherlin admitted she failed the children.

“I loved all my daycare kids as my own, and I believe they loved me and enjoyed hanging out with me during the week,” she said in court, according to The Bulletin. “But I failed you all. I let you all down.”

January Neatherlin, woman accused of abandoning kids to go tanning
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January Neatherlin, woman accused of abandoning kids to go tanning
January Neatherlin

(Photo: Deschutes County Sheriff's Office)
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She pleaded guilty in February to 11 counts of first-degree criminal mistreatment and one count of third-degree assault. Prosecutors initially asked for a 35-year prison sentence.

Other counts stemmed from the previous mistreatment of children.

One child under Neatherlin’s care suffered burns because of an overheated bottle of milk, and another was taken to the hospital with head injuries, The Bulletin reported.

Neatherlin had her run-ins with the law. She was previously charged with identity theft in 2007, according to the Oregonian.

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