Sex offender, mother plead guilty to killing 2-year-old daughter - WBTV 3 News, Weather, Sports, and Traffic for Charlotte, NC

Sex offender, mother plead guilty to killing 2-year-old daughter

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GASTONIA, NC (WBTV) - A registered sex offender pleaded guilty Wednesday morning to killing a 2-year-old.

Jason Michael Wells, 33, agreed to a plea deal in Gaston County Superior Court on charges of second degree murder and babysitting as a registered child sex offender.

Wells has been sentenced to 124 to 158 months which is between 10-13 years in prison.

The child's mother, Shanna Dawn Lanham, 32, also agreed to a plea deal on the charge of second degree murder. She was sentenced to 108 to 139 months in prison.

Addision died from a sepsis infection July 21. Investigators say the girl also had a broken leg that had been untreated for more than a week.

Gaston County Police Capt. J.W. Human says investigators are awaiting a report from the North Carolina Office of the Chief Medical Examiner.

Lanham told authorities she left Addison with Wells while she was at work. They were staying at the America's Best Inn in Bessemer City.

Related article: Hearings reveal sickening details of physical, sexual abuse of toddler

Wells said the girl was unresponsive and he called Lanham to come back to the motel to check on her daughter. When Lanham arrived, she called Gaston County 911.

The girl was taken to Gaston Memorial Hospital where she died that evening.

Lanham and Wells were both charged with involuntary manslaughter, felony child abuse, and contributing to the delinquency of a minor. 

Wells was also charged with failing to notify the sheriff's department with a change of address because he is a registered sex offender, and for babysitting a minor while being a sex offender.

On Wednesday, August 28, the North Carolina Department of Corrections said Lanham's probation officer, Whit Ogg, resigned from his position.

NCDOC spokesman Keith Acree confirmed that a member of Lanham's family repeatedly reached out to Ogg via Facebook urging him to investigate the welfare of the child.

Acree, however, could not confirm other media reports which alleged that Ogg took no action to look into the matter.

Ogg was hired in October 2009 to work for the DOC in Gaston County.

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