Mother cleared in attempted murder case

Published 9:49 am Monday, July 20, 2015

ST. PAUL — Authorities have dropped charges against a Falcon Heights mom accused of choking her eight-year-old daughter after doctors determined the incident stemmed from the mother’s bad reaction to asthma medication.

According to a press release, 31-year-old Jozetta Ranay Byrd was in jail for four months on charges of attempted murder and assault. The Ramsey County attorney’s office said it was dropping charges in a June 19 motion “in light of the defendant’s involuntary intoxication” when the incident happened.

Byrd’s attorney, Mark Todd, said it was a “substance-induced psychotic episode.” He said she was prescribed a steroid she had never taken after an asthma flare-up in early February, and the reaction was so severe that she wasn’t able to “determine right from wrong.”

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Todd said Byrd was “elated” to be released.