Colorado Springs Police Department
Monica Abeyta, 31, was sentenced to probation as a result of a plea bargain accepted by a judge Monday in 4th Judicial District Court.
Under terms of the deferred sentence, backed by prosecutors, all charges against her will be dismissed if she stays out of trouble and keeps up with other requirements while on probation, including an agreement not to use illegal drugs.
Abeyta was arrested after her 3-year-old son shot his younger brother on June 3 while playing with his mother’s handgun, which he found in her backpack. Abeyta told police that she had the gun for protection because she is a single mother. She usually kept it in a lockbox, but had kept the gun with her the night before after hearing a noise that made her paranoid.
The 2-year-old was shot in the back and has largely recovered after a surgery that removed up to 20 percent of his small intestine. The boy has a slight limp for which he is receiving physical therapy.
“His big brother helps a lot, too,” said Joseph Rankins, who shares custody of the children. “They’re getting bigger, better and stronger every day.”