Originally created 12/31/06

Mom convicted of drownings is in jail



Lottie Payne remains in jail.

Jurors held the Warren County woman criminally responsible for the 2005 drownings of her children, Jonah, 3, and 2-year-old Nicole.

Mrs. Payne was convicted Oct. 5 after jurors deliberated only 58 minutes.

She was one of the first defendants in Georgia to be convicted and sentenced under a new charge of second-degree cruelty to children.

Although she has directed her attorney, Michael Garrett, to appeal her five-year sentence, she is incarcerated at the Metro State Prison in Atlanta, according to a Georgia Department of Corrections spokeswoman. The facility houses 900 maximum and medium security female prisoners, with a staff of 308.

Mrs. Payne also was ordered to receive mental health treatment and counseling.

Reach Rob Pavey at (706) 868-1222, ext. 119, or rob.pavey@augustachronicle.com.