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Judge gives tougher sentence to mom for causing crash that killed daugher

WASHBURN, WI (WTAQ) - A Bayfield County judge rejected a lenient plea deal, and sentenced a mother to two years in prison for killing her young daughter in a traffic crash.

Both the prosecution and defense agreed to probation and a year in the county jail for 24-year-old Chelsea Cadotte of Bayfield.

Instead, Circuit Judge Kelly Thimm sent Cadotte to a state prison Monday for twice the amount of time agreed upon -- plus an extra six months in jail.

Thimm said Cadotte deserves a tougher sentence because she put her own seat belt on, but did not restrain her children when her SUV rolled over in July of 2012 on Highway 13 near Washburn.

Her two-year-old daughter Mariah Gordon died, and four-year-old Miley Gordon was left with a traumatic brain injury. Two other kids were also hurt.

Last October, Cadotte pleaded no contest to negligent homicide, reckless endangerment, and reckless injury.

Judge Thimm said Cadotte was ticketed in the past for seat belt violations -- and she kept putting her children at risk. By buckling herself up and not her kids, Thimm said she violated her responsibilities as a parent. 

(Story courtesy of Wheeler News Service)