Ohio mother charged in 6-year-old son’s death seeks insanity plea

kali9/iStockBy MERDITH DELISO, ABC News

(PREBLE COUNTY, Ohio) — The attorney for an Ohio woman charged with the murder of her 6-year-old son is seeking to enter an insanity plea, court records show.

Brittany Gosney, 29, was indicted earlier this month on 16 counts, including murder and abandonment, in the death of James Hutchinson, 6, who police say was dumped in the Ohio River and has yet to be recovered.

“[Gosney] struggles to assist in her defense, and counsel has serious concerns regarding defendant’s mental health,” her attorney, David Washington, wrote in a motion filed in Butler County court Wednesday requesting leave to file a plea of not guilty by reason of insanity and ask for a competency evaluation.

Gosney’s boyfriend, James Hamilton, 42, was also indicted on 15 counts in connection with the first grader’s death. He has pleaded not guilty.

Hutchinson reportedly died while his mother allegedly attempted to abandon him and his two siblings at Rush Run Park in Preble County, Ohio, on Feb. 26, police said.

Hutchinson held on to the car as Gosney allegedly drove away and was dragged, according to court documents obtained by Cincinnati ABC affiliate WCPO. Hamilton allegedly pressured Gosney to abandon the children, according to a Preble County Sheriff’s Office report obtained by WCPO.

Gosney allegedly brought Hutchinson’s body back to their hometown of Middletown, Ohio, before she and Hamilton allegedly dumped the body in the Ohio River near Lawrenceburg, Indiana, police said. The two other children were unharmed, police said.

Police became suspicious after Gosney and Hamilton reported Hutchinson as missing to Middletown police on Feb. 28 and couldn’t agree on when they last saw him, Middletown Police Chief David Birk said during a police briefing earlier this month.

“The whole situation was just red flags all over,” Birk said.

During the investigation, Gosney allegedly confessed to killing Hutchinson and said they “disposed of him” in the Ohio River, the chief said.

Efforts to recover Hutchinson’s body have been hampered by flood conditions.

Both Gosney and Hamilton pleaded not guilty on all charges during their arraignment hearing March 8. They are scheduled to next appear in court March 22.

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