Xena Norman was only 19 months when her father allegedly left her to die in a burning car in 2019, the NYPost reports.
Imhotep Norman, of Spartanburg, received a 28-year prison sentence Tuesday for his fateful decision after fleeing the scene to avoid police.
The 28-year-old plead guilty to homicide by child abuse, possession of marijuana with distribution intent, possession of oxycodone and Xanax, failure to stop for a siren and blue light, and trafficking methamphetamine with intent to disperse amphetamine, according to WSPA 7 News.
Spartanburg County Solicitor’s Office ruled that Xena’s cause of death was acute carbon monoxide poisoning and thermal burns.
South Carolina Highway patrol troopers tried to stop Norman for speeding on April 12, 2019, while he drove in his 2015 Hyundai Sonata. He was traveling 22 miles over the 45-mph zone from Highway 14 onto northbound I-85.
Norman’s car caught flames before the patrolmen tried to subdue him. He reportedly hightailed from the burning car with a backpack filled with drugs, and left his daughter restrained in her car seat. He was later apprehended at a traffic stop near University of South Carolina Upstate after fleeing into a nearby wooded area.
It wasn’t until the fire was extinguished that Xena’s deceased body was found. Norman later told investigators he thought law enforcement would rescue the child, WSPA reports.
He will have to serve at least 85% of his term before being eligible for parole.