Mother pleads not guilty to murder charges in toddler's death

According to police, Weiss told investigators that she left her son home alone for more than 48 hours. (WICS)

A mother charged with first-degree murder in the death of her 2-year-old pleaded not guilty in court Monday.

According to Charleston Police, the defendant, 22-year-old Savannah Weiss, allegedly left her child in a playpen unattended from Friday, December 1 to Sunday, December 3.

The coroner reported that the toddler died from a combination of dehydration and malnourishment.

During Weiss’ preliminary hearing on Monday, a police detective revealed new details about the investigation.

According to police, Weiss told investigators that she left her son home alone for more than 48 hours.

The police investigation revealed Weiss was at the hospital receiving medical treatment for part of that time.

Weiss told police she spent the rest of the weekend with her boyfriend at a friend's house.

At one point, Police said Weiss made a food run to pick up subs at a local Jimmy Johns. During that time, Weiss was just five blocks from her house.

According to police interviews, Weiss discovered her son was dead that Monday morning, but didn’t call the police.

Weiss' mom, who was at the preliminary hearing, called 911 later that morning.

Coles County State's Attorney Brian Bower said his team is now preparing for trial.

"It's our hope that the trial goes forward and that the truth comes out,” Bower said. “And that justice occurs for the child, and that justice occurs for the defendant."

Weiss is due back in court on January 8.

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