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Published: Friday, 3/18/2005

Mother gets 6 months for baby girl's broken leg

A Toledo woman who changed her story about how her baby daughter suffered a broken leg was sentenced yesterday in Lucas County Common Pleas Court.

Judge Ruth Ann Franks ordered Manisa Ludaway, 30, to serve a maximum sentence of six months in the Corrections Center of Northwest Ohio.

Mrs. Ludaway entered an Alford plea Feb. 10 to misdemeanor child endangering. In an Alford plea, a defendant does not admit guilt but pleads to a lesser charge to escape more severe penalties had the case gone to trial.

Her husband, Richard Ludaway, 37, also was charged with child endangering, but prosecutors dismissed the case after Mrs. Ludaway took responsibility for her 1-year-old daughter's broken leg.

The charge against Mr. Ludaway was dismissed Feb. 17.

The couple was indicted on felony counts of child endangering in December after they told authorities their daughter was hurt in a car accident. However, police could not find evidence of the accident.

Mrs. Ludaway then told investigators she grabbed the girl's leg as she fell off a bed in their home at 3615 Chase St., causing the fractured femur.

Judge Ruth Ann Franks questioned whether the incident happened as Mrs. Ludaway claimed, and suggested she was protecting her husband. "You've got to get your priorities right. These babies are yours to protect," Judge Franks said.

The victim is in the care of Lucas County Children Services.

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