CLEVELAND – Cuyahoga County Prosecutor Michael C. O’Malley announced that Dazshea Watkins, 27, was sentenced for attempting to drown her 6-year-old son in her bathtub.

“This mother committed unspeakable crimes against her own child. She has earned every day of her sentence.”

Prosecutor Michael C. O’Malley

On August 28, 2019, Watkins attempted to drown her son in the bathtub of their home near Kinsman Road and East 70th Street in Cleveland. Watkins, who was upset with the victim’s father, held him underwater by his neck and yelled obscenities at him as he struggled and gasped for air. Watkins recorded the entire incident on her cellphone and sent the video to her son’s father. She then took the victim to a bedroom and attempted to suffocate him with a pillow. The child’s aunt arrived at the house to find him alive and took him into custody.

On August 29, 2019, the incident was referred to the Cuyahoga County Department of Child and Family Services (CFS). CFS reported the incident to the Cleveland Division of Police (CPD) after Watkins admitted to the crime.

After an investigation conducted by the CPD Sex Crimes Unit, a warrant was issued for Watkins arrest and she was taken into custody on September 4, 2019.

Watkins pleaded guilty to the following charges:

  • One count of Attempted Murder
  • One count of Kidnapping
  • Two counts of Endangering Children
  • One count of Domestic Violence
  • One count of Felonious Assault
  • One count of Pandering Obscenity Involving A Minor

Watkins was sentenced to a range of 14 to 16 ½ years in prison. She was sentenced under “The Reagan Tokes Law,” which implements an indefinite sentencing system for non-life felonies of the first and second-degree in which the judge imposes both a minimum term (from the current sentencing range) and a maximum term (that includes an additional 50% of the minimum term imposed). The Ohio Department of Corrections will review the case and Watkins’s behavior after she has served 14 years and will make a determination as to whether she should be released.