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Girl, 12, will serve probation for killing her baby brother

A 12-year-old girl who killed her infant brother as he slept in his crib was sentenced to seven years probation on Friday, to be served at a home for troubled children.

Laura Billen was 11 when she killed 2-month-old Jessie Duffy last July. She twisted his neck until a bruised spinal cord shut down his heart and lungs. Then she wrapped the cord of a laundry bag around his neck to make it seem like he had choked accidentally.Authorities say Laura's mother, Christine Decker, often left her daughter and four sons to fend for themselves. As the oldest, Laura had the responsibility of trying to feed and clothe the rest, including a crying infant.

Laura has been in juvenile detention since the killing, a ward of the state. Her mother lost custody of her surviving children because of abuse and neglect.