Grandmother gets life without parole for baby’s meth overdose in Sandy Springs

Credit: Channel 2 Action News

Credit: Channel 2 Action News

A woman convicted of giving her 9-month-old grandson methamphetamine, leading to his death at a Sandy Springs apartment, was sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole.

Tonya Monroe was convicted last month on all five of the counts she faced in the March 2016 death of her grandson, Kobe Conley Shaw.

ExploreWoman convicted in 9-month-old grandson’s meth overdose death

Monroe, now 51, was arrested months after the baby was found unresponsive at the Legends at Dunwoody Apartments off Colquitt Road. She was tried for his murder once before in 2018, but the jury hung 11-1, Fulton County prosecutors said.

At her second trial in November, experts testified that Monroe intentionally poisoned Kobe, who had a rare genetic disorder. She then misled Sandy Springs investigators by trying to make it appear the child had suffocated, authorities said.

The Fulton County medical examiner later determined the child died of an overdose, but Monroe fled after learning the results of that autopsy.

She was eventually arrested in Paulding County after six weeks on the run and charged with malice murder, two counts of felony murder, first-degree cruelty to children and meth distribution. Monroe had also changed her hair color from blond to brown, investigators said.

ExploreGrandmother arrested in baby’s overdose death

“The jury verdict and the sentence reflect the tragedy that Kobe’s family has had to endure for six years,” Deputy District Attorney Lauren McAuley said in a statement. “I hope they find some closure and peace at the conclusion of this trial.”

Fulton DA Fani Willis said Monroe’s conviction was the result of a close partnership between her office, Sandy Springs police and the U.S. marshals who arrested the grandmother.

“After two trials over six years, I’m proud that we were able to get justice for the murder of this precious child,” Willis said Tuesday.