Attorney General Peter F. Kilmartin announced that today Trisha Oliver (age 33), of West Warwick, RI, was sentenced today by Superior Court Justice Kristin E. Rodgers to 20 years with eight years and nine months to serve and the balance suspended with probation for her role in the October 4, 2009 death of her six-year-old son Marco Nieves.
Oliver pleaded guilty to one count of manslaughter on May 9, 2016. Oliver's ex-boyfriend, Michael Patino, is currently serving a life sentence after a Providence County jury found him guilty for the beating and murder of Marco in July 2015.
During the trial of Michael Patino, former Rhode Island Chief Medical Examiner Dr. Thomas Gilson testified that Marco died as a result of inflammation of the abdominal cavity caused by blunt force trauma, and Dr. Linda Snelling, Chief of Pediatric Critical Care at Hasbro Children's Hospital, testified that he may have survived had he received medical treatment for his injuries sooner.
"Trisha Oliver failed to seek medical treatment for her six-year-old son Marco for more than 15 hours, knowing he was in excruciating pain from blows delivered by her boyfriend, Michael Patino. It is unconscionable that Trisha Oliver watched her child be in severe distress, and be more concerned about the whereabouts of her marijuana than seeking medical assistance," said Attorney General Peter Kilmartin. "It took until Marco stopped breathing for Oliver to call 911, and then lied about the severity of her son's injuries to medical professionals, preventing him from receiving life-saving treatment. Trisha Oliver failed in her most basic duties as a mother by not providing Marco the aid he desperately needed, leading to the unnecessary and tragic death of an innocent six-year-old boy."
Cranston Police Detectives John Cardone and Jean-Paul Slaughter led the investigation. Assistant Attorney General Stephen A. Regine and Special Assistant Attorney General Peter Roklan prosecuted the case on behalf of the Office of Attorney General.