A jury found a Virginia woman guilty of first-degree murder in the death of her 2-year-old granddaughter, News4's Julie Carey reported.
The jury recommended a sentence of 35 years in prison for Carmela dela Rosa. The prosecution sought a life sentence.
Dela Rosa threw Angelyn Ogdoc off the sixth-level walkway connecting a parking garage to Tysons Corner Center on Nov. 29. The toddler died hours later.
Dela Rosa's defense tried to prove she was mentally ill and legally insane at the time. Dela Rosa claimed she did not know right from wrong when she threw Angelyn.
Dela Rosa intentionally killed the child out of anger toward James Ogdoc, her son-in-law, prosecutors argued. She did not forgive him for getting her daughter pregnant out of wedlock.
Dela Rosa confessed to police after the incident. In the videotape of her statement, dela Rosa said that when Ogdoc called his wife as she dined with family at Tysons Corner that night, it triggered something in her and she formed the plan to throw Angelyn off the walkway. She told detectives that she saw Angelyn as a way to get back at her son-in-law.
Mall security video showed dela Rosa carrying Angelyn out of the mall after urging everyone to go ahead of her then going to the rail to drop the girl.
Dela Rosa twice attempted suicide in the months leading up to the incident. Friends and her longtime psychotherapist testified that dela Rosa suffered bouts of depression for a decade but went into a tailspin last year after her daughter's pregnancy. Public defender Dawn Butorac argued that dela Rosa was a different woman in her depressive episodes, withdrawn and "afraid of the world" to the point that she regularly refused to leave the house.
The judge will sentence dela Rosa in January. The judge can reduce the sentence from 35 years but can't exceed the jury's recommendation.