A Las Cruces man faces 18 years in prison for the death of his daughter, a 4-month-old who died after being left unattended in a full laundry basket in a closet for hours during and after he went out to get beer.
Robert J. Flores received concurrent prison sentences for negligent child abuse resulting in death and evidence tampering when he was sentenced Tuesday in District Court.
Prosecutors initially accused Flores of intentionally suffocating the child but Judge Fernando Macias said he didn't believe Flores did that.
According to the Las Cruces Sun-News, the judge said the punishment he imposed on the 28-year-old man was to provide accountability.
Flores has been free most of the time since the child died on Dec. 5, 2007, but the judge ordered him taken into custody after being sentenced. An appeal is planned.
Copyright 2013 The Associated Press.