In the deep, dark hours of that morning, student and sorority girl Emile Weaver, then 20, had given birth in the bathroom. She went to the kitchen to cut the umbilical cord, but sensed that the newborn wasn’t moving or breathing. So she wrapped the baby and placenta in a thick plastic bag and threw it in the garbage bin outside.
Soon after, the sorority sisters – who hadn’t known Weaver was pregnant but had been suspicious of her weight gain – found the dead infant in the rubbish. They immediately contacted their supervisor, who called the police.
Yesterday Weaver was found guilty of aggravated murder, abuse of a corpse and tampering with evidence, and sentenced to life in prison.
The case has horrified the US. During Weaver’s court case, it was revealed she had hidden her pregnancy for nine months, allegedly attempting to kill the baby by drinking alcohol, smoking marijuana and playing high-risk sports like dodgeball.
A tearful Weaver told the court she had suffered from “pregnancy denial”, and believed that her daughter was dead when she threw her in the bin – although coroners ruled that the baby was alive.
"I ask God for forgiveness, and today, all I can do is ask for all of yours," she said.
Judge Mark Fleegle questioned Weaver’s remorse. “You tried over and over to take that baby’s life,” he said.
On Monday, Weaver was sentenced to a life in prison without parole. According to various news sources, she intends to appeal her conviction.