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CINCINNATI -- The mother of a 16-month-old girl who was smothered in her North Fairmount home was indicted Thursday and a funeral for her toddler is scheduled to take place Friday morning.
Police say Janishcia Cottingham, 23, killed her daughter Robin on August 15. Officers found the girl dead and alone in their apartment on Bowling Green Court.
The Hamilton County Coroner's Office ruled Thursday Robin's death was caused by asphyxiation due to smothering.
"Each and every member of the coroner's office is deeply saddened by the death of a child and our thoughts and prayers go out to the family," the coroner, Dr. Lakshmi Sammarco, said in a statement.
Cottingham is charged with one count of aggravated murder, one count of murder and one count of felonious assault.
If convicted of all charges, she faces the possibility of life in prison without the possibility of parole.
Cottingham is currently being held on $1 million bond.
“To have such a young life extinguished in this manner borders on being incomprehensible,” said Hamilton County Prosecutor Joseph Deters in a release.
Three weeks before Robin died, her mother and father, Robert Midell, went to Hamilton County Job and Family Services to seek help in raising Robin.
Midell said he took custody of Robin for a time while Cottingham underwent a psychological evaluation. After Cottingham passed her exam, Midell said he gave Robin back to her because he had too much going on in his life.
Cottingham's mother said her daughter had acute anxiety and depression and she "mentally snapped." She said JFS "failed" her daughter.
JFS director Moira Weir said her agency never took custody of the Robin and never saw any indication that the child was abused or neglected.
Weir said JFS was still in the assessment stage of Robin's case when she died.
The funeral for Robin is scheduled to take place at 11 a.m. at Hope For You Family Life & Worship Center,
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