SCHENECTADY, N.Y. -- A woman suspected in the deaths of eight of her young children was found guilty Friday of murdering one of them - aninfant daughter smothered with a pillow.
The jury deliberated 23 hours over three days before convicting Marybeth Tinning, 44, of Balston Spa of one count of second-degree murder in the December 1985 killing of 4-month-old Tami Lynne, one of nine Tinning children who died before age 5.
Investigators have suspected Tinning in eight of the deaths, but the former school bus driver and housewife was only formally charged with Tami Lynne's death.
She was acquitted by the seven-man, five-woman jury of 'deliberately' causing the infant's death, but was convicted of murder by 'depraved indifference to human life.'
Judge Clifford Harrigan immediately revoked Tinning's $100,000 bail, and ordered her held in the Schenectady County Jail. Tinning, dressed in a pink blouse, burgundy slacks and silver high heels, was hustled without comment past reporters by sheriff's deputies.
Tinning faces 25 years to life in prison when she is sentenced Aug. 21.
Upon hearing the verdict in the overflowing courtroom, Tinning cradled her head and later burst into tears.
Defense lawyer Paul Callahan held her one of the woman's hands and tried to console her. He said he would appeal the conviction to state Supreme Court.
Tinning's husband, Joseph, who stayed at his wife's side throughout the three-week trial, said, 'She couldn't believe it.'
He said the jury, 'did its job. I just have a difference of opinion.'
Prosecutors introduced a confession in which Tinning admitted smothering Tami Lynne and said she also killed her sons, Nathan and Timothy Tinning.
In his closing argument, District Attorney John Poersch scoffed at defense claims that Tami Lynne died of a rare, hereditary disorder called Werdnig-Hoffman syndrome.
Callahan had argued there was 'reasonable doubt' in the prosecutor's case, and Tami Lynne may have died of natural causes.
Callahan urged the jury to consider the missing elements of the prosecutor's case. Callahan has argued that investigators intimidated Tinning into making the statement.
During their deliberations, jurors requested a read-back of those portions of Joseph Tinning's testimony recalling his wife's alleged confession to State Police.
In his testimony, Joseph Tinning said that during a five-minute conversation he had with Marybeth Tinning after the questioning, she told him, 'I killed Tami.'