UPDATE: Mother whose daughter died in fire pleads guilty to one charge
MARIES COUNTY- The mother of a 14-year-old girl who was killed in a house fire pleaded guilty to one charge of endangering the welfare of a child Friday.
Tracy Ellis was also initially charged with second-degree murder of her special-needs daughter, Ashlyn Ellis, but that charge was dropped according to court documents.
The Maries County Prosecuting Attorney's Office said when firefighters got to the burning home, Ashlyn's brother told them his sister was still inside according to previous court documents. Firefighters called out to her, but got no response. They later found her body in bed.
The probable cause statement for Tracy's arrest said Ashlyn's bed had a "front gate with wooden boards affixed," and the gate had a "metal spring-loaded hasp, only accessible from the outside of the bed, preventing [Ashlyn] from getting out."
Deputies said Tracy left for work before the fire, leaving Ashlyn unattended for several hours. Her brother told deputies he didn't know Tracy Ellis had left, or else he would have come back home.
According to the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education, Ashlyn Ellis attended the B. W. Robinson School for the Severely Disabled.
The sentencing hearing has been scheduled for 9 a.m. on June 5.