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updated: 7/20/2011 2:51 PM

Elmhurst mom pleads not guilty to drugging son

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  • Cheryl Luchetta

      Cheryl Luchetta

 

An Elmhurst mom accused of giving her 7-year-old son a potentially lethal dose of Valium and Tylenol PM pleaded not guilty Wednesday to aggravated battery and attempted murder.

Cheryl Luchetta, 41, entered the formal plea at an appearance in front of DuPage County Judge Daniel Guerin, one day after she was indicted by a grand jury.

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Luchetta faces six to 30 years in prison if convicted of trying to drug her son to death on June 8 in their home on the 800 block of North York Road.

Prosecutors said Luchetta cut her own throat and took a large quantity of Valium after drugging the boy. When she awoke the next morning, they said, she called police saying a neighbor had attacked her and the child.

Luchetta later confessed she was upset over a child-support dispute with her husband, from whom she is divorcing, and "wanted to end her life, but could not bear to be without (her son)," prosecutors said.

Authorities said Luchetta has a history of mental illness and has been hospitalized for psychiatric treatment. Earlier this week, Guerin ordered her to receive a pretrial psychological evaluation, which is pending.

Luchetta, who did not speak in court Wednesday, is being held in the county jail on $300,000 bail. She's due back in court Aug. 17.

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