Pasadena mom sentenced to 40 years for role in death of toddler and abuse of newborn

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Wednesday, February 21, 2024
Pasadena mother sentenced to 40 years for abuse to 2 kids
Emily Aust will spend 40 yearss behind bars for her role in the abuse of her two sons, which led to the death of one, according to the DA.

PASADENA, Texas (KTRK) -- A Pasadena mother will spend four decades behind bars for her role in the abuse of her two children, leading to the death of one, according to Harris County District Attorney Kim Ogg's Office.

Emily Aust, 30, pleaded guilty in November 2023 and was recently sentenced.

According to authorities, Aust and her boyfriend, 25-year-old Austin Reid, were arrested in 2020 as police and prosecutors looked more into Aust's two children: a 2-year-old toddler who was killed and a newborn who was seriously injured.

Aust and Reid were first put on the police's radar when 2-year-old Lucas, Aust's son from another man, was taken to the hospital after being left alone with Reid on May 19, 2019. Reid was the primary caretaker and said Lucas had drowned while playing in the bathtub. But authorities said Lucas' injuries and bruises, including cigarette burns, indicated child abuse. Lucas was then pronounced dead at the hospital.

At the time of Lucas' death, Aust was pregnant with Reid's son. Five weeks after the baby was born, Reid took the infant to the hospital with a dislocated elbow, where X-rays showed the baby had a brain bleed and other head trauma, likely from being shaken. Upon that discovery, authorities took custody of the baby.

During an investigation into Reid and Aust, both were arrested and charged with child abuse. Photos from their apartment showed a drug house, inducing paraphernalia like spoons with white powder, lighters, and a pack of synthetic marijuana.

A prosecutor on both cases said Reid admitted to being on meth, marijuana, and Xanax when both children were injured. In court, Aust also admitted to using drugs and that her drinking abuse worsened after Lucas' death.

"All of this happened because she allowed it to happen by ignoring the constant signs of child abuse, including the death of her first child," Assistant District Attorney Gilbert Sawtelle said. "If authorities hadn't taken away the baby, he likely would have suffered the same fate because nothing changed, and nothing was going to change."

Aust's sentencing will run concurrently, and she cannot appeal the conviction.