Laufenberg gets up to 14 years in prison

Troy Laufenberg


On Dec. 10, Troy Laufenberg, Monona, received a maximum prison sentence of up to 14 years for one count of child endangerment for causing serious bodily injury to a child and two counts of child endangerment for keeping methamphetamine in a residence where two children were living. Laufenberg was accused of injuring one-year-old Myah Larson in July.


In his sentencing statement, Clayton County Attorney Alan Heavens said, per Iowa law, the crime of causing serious bodily injury to a child is classified as a class C felony with a maximum of up to 10 years in prison. 


“Many people in this room, myself included, believe that the maximum sentence is not enough for what happened to Myah Larson,” Heavans said, “but as prosecutors we have no other choice but to enforce the law as the legislature has written it and, in this case, the law says that the maximum penalty is up to 10 years in prison. The defendant is getting the maximum sentence allowed by law for what he did to Myah Larson.”


Laufenberg was also charged with one count of child endangerment for each of the two children living in the residence with methamphetamine. For each count, the maximum sentence is two years in prison. Laufenberg received the maximum sentence of two years in prison for each of those counts. 


Each prison sentence will run consecutively, bringing the total maximum sentence  to up to 14 years. 


Although Laufenberg received the maximum sentence for all three convictions, Heavens said he understood the sentence seems to fall short of a punishment that would fit the crime.


The charges stem from the execution of a July 19 search warrant through which authorities seized evidence at the Monona home Laufenberg shared with Emily Voshell, the baby the two had together and Myah Larson, Voshell’s child from a previous relationship. 


Officers were initially called to the residence on July 15 after receiving a report of an injured child who was believed to have suffered injuries consistent with Shaken Baby Syndrome.


“Myah Ann Larson was a beautiful and energetic 19-month-old child who had her quality of life totally destroyed by the actions of the defendant in this case, Troy Allen Laufenberg,” Heavens said in his sentencing statement. “Given the brain and lung injuries that Myah suffered, it’s nothing short of a miracle that she is able to breathe on her own now. Even with the unexpected positive progress in rehab, Myah will never have the life that she could have had without the severe injuries that were inflicted by the defendant... The only thing that we as prosecutors can add to the maximum sentence is our heartfelt sympathies to Myah’s parents, family and friends and to Myah herself.”

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