Samantha Eyten was sentenced in Lincoln County Court Thursday for her part in the so-called “kid kennelers” case.
Eyten, one of four adults charged in October after two young boys were found caged in a dog kennel inside a North Platte home, pled no contest to misdemeanor child abuse.
Her case returned to county court from district court.
Eyten was convicted of second degree child abuse and sentenced to a year of probation. She was ordered to attend counseling if her probation officer deems it necessary.
Two of the other defendants in the case, Bryson Eyten and Lacy Beyer, previously received the same sentence. The mother of the two boys, Ashley Clark, was sentenced to two years of probation.
The initial charges of felony child abuse and false imprisonment against all four adults were reduced after Lincoln County District Judge Richard Birch ruled crucial evidence could not be used. Birch agreed with defense attorneys that law officers failed to read the defendants their Miranda rights when they were arrested and booked. In particular, Birch said statements made the day after the arrest during an interview with Health and Human Services workers were inadmissable.
Police said all four were aware of the living conditions and confinement of the two boys. Clark said she was afraid the boys might climb out the window, police said.
Police also said the house and yard were filthy, with urine, feces and trash, but there was no evidence suggesting the children were physically beaten or malnourished.
News of their arrests spread throughout the country.