TYLER, Texas (KETK) – A Tyler woman pleaded guilty on Thursday to leaving an 11-month-old infant that she was babysitting in a bathroom closet alone for three hours.

Kelsey Frazier, 28, will now await her sentence from 241st District Court Judge Jack Skeen after an emotional, three-and-a-half-hour hearing that featured testimony from several witnesses, including Alyssa Duffey, the baby’s mother.

Lead prosecutor Heath Chamness recommended 16 years in prison, just four years short of the maximum, while her defense attorneys requested 10 years of deferred probation. This means the case against her would be dismissed if she followed all the conditions through 2031.

Duffey said she had met Frazier just days after her daughter Addison’s birth when she was in search of a lactation specialist. She testified that Frazier became Addison’s eventual babysitter and that she “was so thankful for [Frazier]” and “really trusted her a lot.”

In October 2020, Frazier left Addison in her bathroom closet for more than three hours and was found by her father’s roommate, who lived below her.

Duffey testified that Frazier never gave her any indication that she had left Addison in danger and lied multiple times about the incident, claiming she was being framed by her father’s girlfriend.

Duffey is a registered nurse and was surprised, but thankful, that Addison did not die or was seriously injured while being left alone.

It has traumatized me for life and… she manipulated me from day one.

Alyssa Duffey, Addison’s mother

Shannon Smallwood, a co-worker of Frazier’s testified as a character witness on her behalf saying that she was “a precious, young woman and a very loyal friend.” She also spoke on Frazier’s health issues that include frequent blood clots that require shots and severe asthma.

Smallwood was pressed repeatedly by Chamness if she would be asking for probation for Frazier if her own child had been abandoned. She replied that “I would be horrified, but God is my life… I would forgive her for my own self.” Smallwood also said that she “doesn’t believe prison is the answer.”

Frazier’s father also testified through tears and that there was no excuse for her actions, saying “She is a very remorseful woman, she knows this is a life-changer.” He also told Skeen that if he would consider probation, she would have a job at his company immediately and would be kept away from children.

In final arguments, Chamness hammered on the seriousness of the crime and explained why he was asking for such a lengthy sentence for a first-time offender.

Do I think she’s a perpetual, long-term criminal? No, I don’t. But I think there are some offenses that are so egregious and there are so many aggravating factors that it simply doesn’t justify probation. And this is one of those cases.

Heath Chamness, Prosecutor for Smith County

For the defense, attorney Bobby Mims pointed to the pre-sentence report that said she had “a very low risk” of recidivism and that he was confident that Frazier could meet all the conditions of probation for ten years.

The sentence now sits with Judge Skeen and court officials gave no indication on when he might come to a decision.