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Weeks after conviction, mother sentenced to 40 years for killing two newborns

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CONWAY — Shackled and in a prison jumpsuit, Alyssa Dayvault was sentenced to two 40-year prison terms that will run concurrently for the murder of her two newborns.

She is not eligible for parole.

After the sentence was read, the defense team made a motion for Judge Steven John to reconsider the sentence, saying that she had no prior criminal record, while suggesting that her actions were from a result of “mental health issues.”

Dayvault asked to address the court and gave a message to her family and two living children.

“I hope that one day they’ll be able to forgive me for what I’ve done,” she said.

Turning around with tears in her eye, Dayvault added, “I never meant to do anything. I made a horrible mistake. I would never do anything to harm anyone, especially a child.”

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Alyssa Dayvault was sentenced for killing two of her newborns, receiving two 40-year prison terms without the possibility of parole. Nick Masuda/Staff

Chief Deputy Solicitor Scott Hixson explained to the judge that Dayvault was found competent to stand trial and therefore her sentence should not be reduced.

“In South Carolina, you are either insane or you are not,” Hixson explained. “And since she’s not, she bears the full brunt of the law.”

The judge ultimately found that the sentence was “proper” and declined to “lessen the sentence in any way.”

Hixson said while this was a “polarizing” case, the most important thing to come out of it is that two innocent lives could have been saved.

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Alyssa Dayvault is sentenced for killing two of her babies, receiving 40 years in prison without the possibility of parole.

“It is really important for people to know that there are options,” Hixson said. “Every life is terribly important and if you have a problem or there is a concern, reach out. People will help you. You don’t have to do this alone. You don’t have to take drastic steps by yourself.”

On Oct. 15, Dayvault was found guilty on two counts of homicide by child abuse, wrapping up a years-long process after she killed two of her newborn children by throwing them in the trash, a baby girl in 2017 and a baby boy in 2018.

Dayvault was not present during the entire trial and turned herself into the North Myrtle Beach police a day after the verdict was read. The sentence was sealed until she could be brought back before the court.

Follow Richard Caines on Twitter at @rickcaines

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