Peoria childcare worker acquitted of murder charge

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PEORIA, Ariz. - Three years ago a Peoria babysitter was charged with the death of a baby in her care, but Thursday, she became a free woman.

The case could have ended in the death penalty, but all charges against Lisa Randall have been dropped after the county attorney's office says medical doctors and experts made a series of incorrect calls.

There were a lot of hugs and hand holding as Lisa Randall, 49, walked out of the court room a free woman, but one who now questions everything she thought she knew.

“I always believed in the justice system and it took this for me to realize that you are so guilty until you prove yourself innocent,” Randall said.

In 2007, Randall was charged with first degree murder for the death of 4 month-old Dillon Uutela, a baby she was watching at her home daycare in Peoria.

The county pathologist at the time said the cause of death was blunt force trauma of the head and neck.

This year, the county attorney’s office hired an expert out of Oregon to review the death penalty case.

“You could not show that this was a homicide, that this might possibly have been a SIDS like event,” said Cindi Nannetti with MCAO major crimes. “He did not feel that there was any blunt force trauma and therefore we could not go forward with the prosecution in this case.”

So after seven months in prison and the rest on house arrest, Randall said she's leaving the chains of this old chapter of her life behind.

“I'm going to go get my ankle monitor off,” she said.

Randall said she's also thinking of Dillon's parents because the recent court decision is not enough to bring their baby back.

“I loved Dillon like my own and I feel like they're victims also,” Randall said. “I feel like all of us are. I hope that this will give them some peace.”

Randall, along with her lawyer plan on filing suits against Peoria police and the medical examiner’s office, because of all that she has suffered.