2-13-04 - Sarah Ganis is guilty of nine counts of child endangerment, 8 months after her three young children died in an Ardmore house fire. A Carter County jury returned the verdict late Friday night after deliberating for 5 hours. Three of those counts are connected to when she left the children sleeping in her home while she went to a neighbor's house. Closing arguments finished this afternoon in what has been a relatively short trial this week. Both sides tried to paint a very different picture of Ganis. District Attorney Mitch Sperry addressed the jury for more than half an hour, saying Ganis had a persistent and unacceptable pattern of neglect. Prosecutors say that led to the deaths of her three children. But defense attorney Eric Jones argued his client was a loving mother and a victim of circumstance; admitting Ganis made mistakes but she was taking steps to take better care of her children. Tonight's sentencing was only a recommendation. A judge will make his decision next month.
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