Ex-high school cheerleader sentenced to probation after burying her newborn baby in backyard

A former Ohio high school cheerleader who buried her newborn daughter in the backyard of her family home was sentenced to three years probation following a lengthy, widely publicized court battle.

Brooke Skylar Richardson, now 20, was sentenced on one felony charge of corpse abuse Friday after her Thursday acquittal on the additional charges of aggravated murder, involuntary manslaughter and child endangerment, WISN reports. She was also handed a seven-day jail sentence but was credited for time she already served.

During her sentencing, Richardson told the court she was "really, really sorry" and that she believes she has "become better in the knowledge that I've upset everyone and hurt so many people with what I've done."

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Brooke Skylar Richardson on trial
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Brooke Skylar Richardson on trial
Brooke "Skylar" Richardson stands during a break in her trial in Warren County Common Pleas Court Monday, September 9, 2019. The 20-year-old is accused of killing and burying her baby in the backyard of her Carlisle home. Richardson is charged with aggravated murder, involuntary manslaughter, gross abuse of a corpse, tampering with evidence and child endangerment in the death of her newborn infant. She faces the possibility of life in prison. (Photo by Nick Graham/Pool/Mansfield News Journal via Imagn Content Services, LLC/USA Today Network/Sipa USA)
Brooke "Skylar" Richardson stands during a break in the Warren County Courthouse during her trial Monday, September 9, 2019. The 20-year-old is accused of killing and burying her baby in the backyard of her Carlisle home. Richardson is charged with aggravated murder, involuntary manslaughter, gross abuse of a corpse, tampering with evidence and child endangerment in the death of her newborn infant. She faces the possibility of life in prison. (Photo by Nick Graham/Pool/Mansfield News Journal via Imagn Content Services, LLC/USA Today Network/Sipa USA)
Brooke "Skylar" Richardson talks to her attorney Charles M. Rittgers during her trial in Warren County Common Pleas Court Monday, September 9, 2019. The 20-year-old is accused of killing and burying her baby in the backyard of her Carlisle home. Richardson is charged with aggravated murder, involuntary manslaughter, gross abuse of a corpse, tampering with evidence and child endangerment in the death of her newborn infant. She faces the possibility of life in prison. (Photo by Nick Graham/Pool/Mansfield News Journal via Imagn Content Services, LLC/USA Today Network/Sipa USA)
Tracy Johnson, the baby's maternal grandmother and mother of the baby's father Trey Johnson, cries after delivering a statement during Brooke Skylar Richardson's sentencing hearing, Friday, Sept. 13, 2019, in Lebanon, Ohio. Richardson, acquitted the day before of killing her newborn but convicted of corpse abuse, was sentenced to three years' probation, was sentenced to three years' probation. (Kareem Elgazzar/The Cincinnati Enquirer via AP, Pool)
Kim Richardson, center, walks out of the courtroom after her daughter Brooke Skylar Richardson was sentenced, Friday, Sept. 13, 2019, in Lebanon, Ohio. Richardson, acquitted the day before of killing her newborn but convicted of corpse abuse, was sentenced to three years' probation, was sentenced to three years' probation. (Kareem Elgazzar/The Cincinnati Enquirer via AP, Pool)
Brooke "Skylar" Richardson walks into the courthouse with her mother, Kim Richardson ahead of the day's proceedings, Friday, Sept. 6, 2019, in Warren County Judge Donald Oda's II courtroom at Warren County Common Pleas Court in Lebanon, Ohio. Brooke Skylar Richardson (Photo by Albert Cesare / The Enquirer, Cincinnati Enquirer via Imagn Content Services, LLC/USA Today Network/Sipa USA)
Brooke "Skylar" Richardson walks into the courthouse with her mother, Kim Richardson ahead of the day's proceedings, Friday, Sept. 6, 2019, in Warren County Judge Donald Oda's II courtroom at Warren County Common Pleas Court in Lebanon, Ohio. Brooke Skylar Richardson (Photo by Albert Cesare / The Enquirer, Cincinnati Enquirer via Imagn Content Services, LLC/USA Today Network/Sipa USA)
Brooke "Skylar" Richardson walks into the courthouse with her parents, Kim and Scott Richardson ahead of the day's proceedings, Friday, Sept. 6, 2019, in Warren County Judge Donald Oda's II courtroom at Warren County Common Pleas Court in Lebanon, Ohio. Brooke Skylar Richardson (Photo by Albert Cesare / The Enquirer, Cincinnati Enquirer via Imagn Content Services, LLC/USA Today Network/Sipa USA)
Brooke "Skylar" Richardson steps out of the courtroom during a recess of proceedings, Friday, Sept. 6, 2019, at Warren County Common Pleas Court in Lebanon, Ohio. Richardson is on trial in the death of her newborn daughter found buried in her family's Ohio backyard. (Albert Cesare/The Cincinnati Enquirer via AP, Pool)
A video interview with Warren County Sheriff's Office detectives is played during the trial of Brooke "Skylar" Richardson in the Warren County Common Pleas Court Monday, September 9, 2019. The 20-year-old is accused of killing and burying her baby in the backyard of her Carlisle home. Richardson is charged with aggravated murder, involuntary manslaughter, gross abuse of a corpse, tampering with evidence and child endangerment in the death of her newborn infant. She faces the possibility of life in prison. (Photo by Nick Graham/Pool/Mansfield News Journal via Imagn Content Services, LLC/USA Today Network/Sipa USA)
Brooke "Skylar" Richardson exits the courtroom at the conclusion of the day's proceedings, Thursday, Sept. 5, 2019, in Warren County Judge Donald Oda's II courtroom at Warren County Common Pleas Court in Lebanon, Ohio. Richardson, 20, is accused of killing and burying her baby in the backyard of her Carlisle home. Richardson is charged with aggravated murder, involuntary manslaughter, gross abuse of a corpse, tampering with evidence and child endangerment in the death of her newborn infant. She faces the possibility of life in prison. Skylar Richardson Trial Sept 5 (Photo by Kareem Elgazzar/The Enquirer, Cincinnati Enquirer via Imagn Content Services, LLC/USA Today Network/Sipa USA)
Brooke 'Skylar' Richardson, 20, walks into the Warren County Courthouse in Lebanon, Ohio, Tuesday, September 3, 2019. Richardson, of Carlisle, is charged with aggravated murder, involuntary manslaughter, gross abuse of a corpse, tampering with evidence and child endangerment in the death of her newborn infant. She faces the possibility of life in prison. She was 18 at that time. Her attorneys are Charlie H. Rittgers and his son, Charlie M. Rittgers. The judge is Donald Oda II. Skylar Richardson Trial Begins In Infant Death (Photo by Liz Dufour/The Enquirer, Cincinnati Enquirer via Imagn Content Services, LLC/USA Today Network/Sipa USA)
Brooke "Skylar" Richardson, enters the Warren County Courthouse Tuesday, September 3, 2019.The 20-year-old accused of killing and burying her baby in the backyard of her Carlisle home. Richardson is charged with aggravated murder, involuntary manslaughter, gross abuse of a corpse, tampering with evidence and child endangerment in the death of her newborn infant. She faces the possibility of life in prison. Sept2 Richardson1 (Photo by Cara Owsley/The Enquirer, Cincinnati Enquirer via Imagn Content Services, LLC/USA Today Network/Sipa USA)
Brooke Skylar Richardson, right, arrives with her father Scott Richardson, for jury selection in her trial at the Warren County Courthouse Tuesday, Sept. 3, 2019, in Lebanon, Ohio. Richardson, 20, accused of killing and burying her newborn daughter in her family's backyard in the southwest Ohio village of Carlisle, is charged with aggravated murder, involuntary manslaughter, gross abuse of a corpse, tampering with evidence and child endangerment in the death of her newborn infant. She faces the possibility of life in prison. (Cara Owsley/The Cincinnati Enquirer via AP, Pool)
Family members of Brooke 'Skylar' Richardson, 20, walk into the Warren County Courthouse in Lebanon, Ohio, Tuesday, Sept. 3, for the first day of jury selection in the case against Brooke 'Skylar' Richardson, 20. Richardson, of Carlisle, is charged with aggravated murder, involuntary manslaughter, gross abuse of a corpse, tampering with evidence and child endangerment in the death of her newborn infant. She faces the possibility of life in prison. She was 18 at that time. Skylar Richardson Trial Begins In Infant Death (Photo by Liz Dufour, Liz Dufour/The Enquirer, Cincinnati Enquirer via Imagn Content Services, LLC/USA Today Network/Sipa USA)
Brooke Sylar Richardson stands during a break during court proceedings, Wednesday, Sept. 11, 2019, at Warren County Common Pleas Court in Lebanon, Ohio. Richardson is accused of killing and burying her newborn daughter in the backyard of her home. (Kareem Elgazzar/The Cincinnati Enquirer via AP, Pool)
Brooke Sylar Richardson stands during a break during court proceedings, Wednesday, Sept. 11, 2019, at Warren County Common Pleas Court in Lebanon, Ohio. Richardson is accused of killing and burying her newborn daughter in the backyard of her home. (Kareem Elgazzar/The Cincinnati Enquirer via AP, Pool)
Brooke Sylar Richardson talks with her father, Scott, during a break, Wednesday, Sept. 11, 2019, at Warren County Common Pleas Court in Lebanon, Ohio. Richardson is accused of killing and burying her newborn daughter in the backyard of her home. (Kareem Elgazzar/The Cincinnati Enquirer via AP, Pool)
Brooke "Skylar" Richardson stands during a break in her trial in the Warren County Common Pleas Court Tuesday, September 10, 2019. The 20-year-old is accused of killing and burying her baby in the backyard of her Carlisle home. Richardson was charged with aggravated murder, involuntary manslaughter, gross abuse of a corpse, tampering with evidence and child endangering in the death of her newborn infant. (Nick Graham/The Journal-News via AP, Pool)
Judge Donald Oda II oversees the courtroom during the trial of Brooke Skylar Richardson in the Warren County Common Pleas Court Tuesday, Sept. 10, 2019, in Lebanon, Ohio. Richardson is accused of killing and burying her newborn daughter in the backyard of her home. (Nick Graham/The Journal-News via AP, Pool)
In this Friday, July 21, 2017 file photo, Brooke Skylar Richardson makes her first court appearance in Franklin Municipal Court in Franklin, Ohio. A prosecutor says Skylar whose newborn infant's remains were found buried outside her home in southwest Ohio has been indicted on charges of aggravated murder and other offenses.Warren County Prosecutor David Fornshell says a grand jury Friday, Aug. 4, 2017 also indicted Brooke Skylar Richardson on charges of involuntary manslaughter, child endangering, tampering with evidence and gross abuse of a corpse in the May death. (FOX19 NOW/Michael Buckingham via AP, File)
This undated photo provided by the Warren County Jail shows Brooke Skylar Richardson. Richardson, whose newborn infant's remains were buried outside her southwest Ohio home, pleaded not guilty to aggravated murder and other charges, Monday, Aug. 7, 2017. (Warren County Jail via AP)
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Richardson was an 18-year-old senior at the time she became pregnant and secretly gave birth to a baby girl at her home in Carlisle, Ohio, in May 2017, days after her high school prom. The baby girl's remains were discovered near her family's backyard barbecue pit about two months later, according to Fox News.

Throughout the two-year legal fight, prosecutors alleged Richardson intentionally killed her newborn and disposed of the body because she did not want to "ruin her perfect life," which included starting classes at the University of Cincinnati in the fall of 2017.

The defense, however, maintained that Richardson's baby, which she apparently named Annabelle, was stillborn and that the flustered teen buried the baby out of sadness and fear of repercussion.

Although a forensic pathologist testified that the baby died from "homicidal violence," Warren County Prosecutor David Fornshell said Thursday following Richardson's acquittal that decomposition made it impossible to discern how the child actually died.

Judge Donald Oda II on Friday slammed Richardson's "grotesque disregard for life" as he handed down her lenient sentence, adding, "I know in my heart that if you would have made different decisions in this case, Annabelle would be here today."

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