N.J. Mom Strangled Newborn Girl Minutes After Birth — Then Dumped Her Body to Be Taken Out with the Trash

A New Jersey woman who admitted to strangling her newborn daughter shortly after giving birth in her home was sentenced to seven years in prison on Friday, PEOPLE confirms.

Gloucester County Prosecutor’s Office spokesman Bernie Weisenfeld confirms to PEOPLE that Jade O. Fanz, 21, previously pleaded guilty to second-degree manslaughter in the February 2016 death of her child, who was found days later in a trash receptacle behind the woman’s home in Franklin Township.

After the incident, Fanz had complications and needed emergency medical attention. Hospital employees became suspicious and called police, says Weisenfeld.

Prosecutors had said the baby was “minutes old” when Fanz strangled her, NJ.com reports. The outlet also reports that Fanz hid the body in her bathroom vanity.

In an email to PEOPLE, Assistant Gloucester County Prosecutor Steve Salvati wrote the baby’s body was placed in the trash “so that it would be removed with the weekly municipal trash pickup.”

“We can only speculate as to motive,” Salvati wrote, “but given the defendant’s age, education, and other familial factors, and from what was disclosed during her interviews, the defendant was probably acting out off fear, scared of the situation she was in and unsure how to properly react/respond.”

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Initially, Fanz had been charged with murder and other counts.

Salvati wrote prosecutors considered the manslaughter plea appropriate due to “various mitigating elements” in Fanz’ health and school records.

As part of her plea agreement, Fanz must serve 85 percent of her prison sentence, says Weisenfeld.

Fanz’ attorney Kevin Mitchell tells PEOPLE that Fanz has seemed remorseful for her actions. He says he will not appeal the sentence, calling it a “fair and appropriate resolution to the case.”

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