A Jupiter woman was sentenced Tuesday to life in prison with no parole for drowning her ex-partner’s 2-year-old daughter at their home in 2014.
Kimberly Lucas, 43, pleaded guilty to murder in connection to the case.
It was a sense of finality that washed over Jacquelyn Jamason and her family after the verdict.
“We are happy with the outcome,” said Jamason. “We’ve been waiting for three years.”
Her ex-partner Kimberly Lucas accepted a plea deal that will see her spend her life in prison.
Lucas drowned their 2-year-old daughter Elianna in a bathtube and attempted to kill their son Ethan three years ago.
In addition to the life sentence, Lucas received a 30-year sentence for the attempted murder of Ethan.
“I failed Ellie,” Lucas told the courtroom. “And a result, she isn’t here with is today.”
Since 2014, the case has been through the ups and downs of the court system.
One debate that raged for months - whether Lucas’ could be eligible for the death penalty after the Supreme Court found it unconstitutional.
Jamason, however, says the death penalty was never her intention, calling the system flawed.
“I think that’s in God’s hands, and it’s not my right to take someone else’s life because my daughters life was taken,” she says.
Lucas’ mother Patricia Blackburn says her daughter wanted to avoid that too.
“To keep Ethan and me and her family from dealing with a trial and media and all these things, she took the option of taking the plea,” she says.
She says she failed to get her daughter the help she needed with her mental health.
"One [reason] was money, the other was because a lot of people didn’t understand the type of illness she had. Because of that, I feel positive this was the reason this all happened."
Jamason is hoping now with court in the past, they can now move on to embrace a brighter future.
“I believe justice is served because we’re safe now ... forever.”
As for what’s next, the family has a foundation in place in Elianna’s name that will benefit social justice causes.
Ethan, meanwhile, is hoping to soon attend art school in Michigan.
Lucas’ attorneys say they are looking to move her to a prison in another state to serve her sentence.
In December 2016, a judge removed the death penalty from the jury’s consideration.