Reporting Maria Medina
GRASS VALLEY (CBS13) — A Grass Valley mother won’t spend a day in prison in the drowning of her daughter more than 40 years ago after the murder charge against her was tossed.
Patricia Thomas would not come to the door of her Grass Valley home. Instead, CBS13 was greeted by her husband who said she was sick.
Wednesday was part of the first week of her five-year probation sentence in the drowning death of her 4-year-old daughter more than four decades ago.
She once faced a count of murder, but a judge dismissed it due to a lack of evidence.
It was Thomas’ older daughter who helped investigators reopen the case. She said she walked into the bathroom and saw her mother drowning her sister. But at the time, the death was reported as a bathtub drowning.
CBS13: Why, 40 years later, is this coming out?
Thomas’ Husband: Well, I don’t know. She’s got a daughter that’s not there.
CBS13: I saw those comments that her daughter made. Is she pretty hurt by those comments?
Husband: Who wouldn’t be? Wouldn’t you?
Some who live near Thomas says she’s the only one who knows the truth.
“I think that she should be watched, maybe,” said neighbor Dennis Hurley. “It’s been a long time, but the evidence I guess was circumstantial. But people could be nervous.”
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