Woman sentenced for drowning autistic son

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Patricia Corby during her first arraignment.

Patricia Corby during her first arraignment.

SAN DIEGO — A mother who drowned her autistic 4-year-old son in a bathtub has been sentenced to 15 years to life in prison.

Patricia Corby pleaded guilty to second-degree murder in the death of her son, Daniel.

According to testimony at a preliminary hearing in September, Corby contemplated suicide before holding her son down in several inches of water until he was lifeless in the family’s Carmel Valley condominium.

An investigator for the District Attorney’s Office testified that Corby told him she cared for her son at home and felt she had no time to do anything else.

The investigator testified that Corby said she tried to drown herself after killing her son but couldn’t.

The victim’s father, who was at work at the time of his son’s death, testified that he and his wife amassed $70,000 in debt getting their son numerous types of treatment.

He testified that he saw no signs that his wife suffered from any mental disease before she killed their son.