Natchitoches Mom Sentenced For Her Role In Burning Death of Baby
After reaching a plea deal, 26-year-old Hanna Barker will be heading to prison for her role in the burning death of her infant son in 2018.
In July of 2018, Barker had reported to police that two men attacked her, sprayed pepper spray in her face, and kidnapped her 6-month-old son Levi. She had told police officers that she had escaped the confrontation with the men and ran away, but when she returned to her home, Levi was missing.
The infant's body was later found in Natchitoches Parish, just a few miles from Barker's home, with severe burns over 90% of his body. He was rushed to a Shreveport hospital, where he succumbed to his injuries after just a few hours.
Eventually, Barker and her friend Felicia Marie-Nicole Smith were both arrested. Investigators believed they both played a role in Levi's death. Originally Barker faced charges of First Degree Murder and Conspiracy to Commit First Degree Murder of a Child Younger Than 12 Years Old. Natchitoches District Attorney Billy Harrington had called for the death penalty in the case.
Marie-Nicole Smith admitted to killing the infant. She plead guilty to multiple charges, including Manslaughter, Criminal Conspiracy to Commit First Degree Murder, and Cruelty to a Juvenile. She was previously sentenced to 80 years in prison. With part of her plea agreement deal stating that she would testify against Barker.
Prior to the start of Barker's trial, she reached a plea deal with prosecutors. Barker pled guilty to Manslaughter of a Child Under 10 Years Old and Conspiracy to Commit First Degree Murder of a Child Under 12 Years Old. The Manslaughter charge carries a 10-year-sentence, and the Conspiracy charge carries a 30-year-sentence. Barker will be allowed to serve the terms concurrently, and will only face a total of 30 years in prison.