LAKE CHARLES, LA (KPLC) -The man who pleaded guilty in connection with the death of two-year-old Willow Rain Renteria-Molina, in Vernon Parish, has been sentenced to 80 years in prison.
As he received his sentence, more details about what happened to the child became public.
A sentencing memo in the case of Rodney Bailey is, in the words of the prosecutor, to “serve as a testament in answer to the public outcry for justice in the homicide of Willow Rain Renteria-Molina.” That’s from the State’s Sentencing Recommendation and Memorandum of Law, now public.
Bailey was never charged with murder and pleaded guilty to second-degree cruelty to a juvenile and obstruction of justice. Still, the state asked the court to “punish...Bailey for being the direct cause of death of an innocent two-year old girl and his efforts to escape responsibility for ending that life.”
The 22-page memo sets forth the facts developed by the state, saying the child’s life would be determined by events beyond her control--specifically when Rodney Bailey came to live with her and her family which the prosecutor writing the memo calls, “the deciding factor in ending the incredibly short life of a beautiful 2-year-old child.”
The memo goes on to discuss various injuries Willow suffered, saying that the evidence shows "Bailey's explanation (of a head injury) was a false portrayal of the cause of that injury."
The memo also discusses in the two days leading up to Willow's death, that Bailey refused to allow anyone to see the child.
The state believes that by late afternoon of May 5th, 2016, "Bailey had been hiding the dead child for several hours and saw a chance to finally move the body without being detected."
The state believes Willow had been dead in his room for more than 19 1/2 hours before he moved the body.
The memo says later, "Bailey stuffed Willow's dead body head first into...(a) duffle bag."
The state further describes an unidentified liquid was poured onto the body which caused skin slippage. Eventually the body was dumped in Beauregard Parish.
According to the state, the autopsy shows willow died of the “combined effects of blunt force trauma to her head and a cocktail of ethanol, codeine, amphetamine, methamphetamine...(and more) all found in the child’s blood.”
Ultimately Prosecutor Lea Hall writes in the memo, "In a supreme act of treachery, he (Bailey) discarded that baby girl like a piece of trash."
The state asked that Bailey receive at least 60 years in prison and the court imposed eighty.
Bailey is expected to serve most of his sentence but will eventually be eligible for parole.