NEW BERN, N.C. (WNCT) – After nearly three years of waiting, the case of child abuse against a New Bern nanny resulted in a plea deal before it went to trial.

On Wednesday, defendant Lauren Ashley Rowe appeared in court for the trial and pleaded no contest. In 2021, Rowe was charged with one count of misdemeanor child abuse. Since Rowe pleaded no contest, there was no actual trial.

Craven County District Attorney Scott Thomas said in North Carolina, no-contest pleas are treated as guilty verdicts.

“The judge then sentenced the defendant seven days active in the Craven County Jail and then after that active sentence is completed, there will be 24 months of probationary sentence with a number of conditions on that probation,” Thomas said.

Oglesby family (Sarah Gray Barr, WNCT photo)

Some of those conditions are that Rowe is not to have contact with the victim or the victim’s family. She is not allowed to work around those who are under 18. Rowe is not allowed to have unsupervised contact with children under 16, any contact must have a parent or guardian present. Additionally, Rowe must undergo both psychological and anger management assessments and follow the treatment and conditions from said assessment.

9OYS sat down with the family of the victim earlier in the week. Parents Laura and Maxwell Oglesby said they met Rowe in an online mom’s group while looking for a nanny for their child Declan and his sibling.

The father, Maxwell, said Rowe watched their child several times before they realized something was wrong.

“My wife had noticed marks on our child’s arms whenever she had dropped him off with my mother, their grandmother,” Maxwell said.

This prompted the child’s mother, Laura, to look at her nanny cameras.

(Oglesby Family photo used with permission)

“You’re trusting them with your children. Those are my heartbeats out of my body,” Laura said.

In a viral video, Rowe is seen holding Declan and putting food in his face while he screams.

“I want this to be on her record and never be able to come off, if she tries to work in a daycare or anything and they do a background check, I want them to be able to find it,” Laura said.

In the courtroom, Defense Attorney Lee Bettis from the Bettis Law Firm said Rowe wanted to help kids and asked if it was fair to punish Rowe for a 43-second-long mistake out of a life dedicated to helping kids.

9OYS also received a statement from Bettis on behalf of the defendant that read:

“My client has kept quiet about this case in the press as to respect the family during this time. She feels remorse for how the meal went and has taken countless actions to move forward and learn from this such as becoming a CNA and earning certifications in early childhood development as well as child nutrition.

“Lauren Rowe has been volunteering for her community and has worked with children since she herself was a child. I think we would all like to move forward from this with hopes that a 43-second video will not define this woman for the rest of her life.”

Thomas told 9OYS the victim’s family was pleased with the outcome.

“The family was very supportive of this plea and this sentence. My assistant DA (district attorney) who prosecuted this case worked very closely with the family throughout this case, preparing for what we thought could have been a trial (Wednesday),” said Thomas.

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Credit: Original content published here.

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