Stepmother of Danville toddler sentenced to 15 years in prison

She said the boy slipped in the shower


WISCONSIN – A month and a half ago, a northern Wisconsin jury found Ellen Tran guilty in the homicide of her stepson, 20-month-old Avery Edwards.

Edwards and his mother, Lori, mostly lived in the Danville area.

Tran said the boy slipped in the shower, but prosecutors successfully argued Tran abused him much more than that.

Tuesday, Tran was sentenced to 15 years in prison.

“What kind of mother does any of the things that you have done?”

Lori Edwards has a mental picture of what Ellen Tran did to her son Avery.

Edwards said Tran tormented, taunted, abused, and broke the spirit of the toddler before causing his death during a 2017 stay with Tran and the boy’s father, Trung Tran.

“I dropped him off for visitation, and he never came home. Well, his ashes did. I brought him home in a little box.”

In October, a jury convicted Tran for first-degree reckless homicide, and she faced a possible 40 years in prison.

On Tuesday, Judge Patrick O’Melia sentenced her to 15 years in prison followed by seven on extended supervision.

“He would have been safer if just left on somebody’s doorstep. A stranger would have taken better care of Avery.”

District Attorney Michael Schiek showed videos and pictures of Avery, set to music, before asking for a prison sentence of 20 to 25 years.

Tran’s attorney suggested six years in prison.

Tran asked the judge to consider that her own children will be without a mother while she’s in prison.

“Your Honor, I’m terribly saddened by the death of Avery. I pray that God be with his family.  I’m truly sorry I wasn’t able to do more to protect him.”

Tran will be 45 when she’s released.

But Edwards reminded the court her son is gone forever.
“You killed him. Your actions of abuse killed Avery.”

Tran told Judge Patrick O’Melia today she’ll accept his sentence.She said it’s part of God’s plan.