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Neenah woman innocent by insanity in son's death

A Neenah woman will spend time in a mental institution after a judge ruled her insane in killing her 2-year-old son.

Winnebago County Circuit Judge Scott Woldt found Brenda Thiel, 28, innocent by insanity Tuesday.

She had pleaded no contest to a homicide charge in the death of her son Caleb on May 5.

She told authorities she smothered the child after hearing voices telling her to do so. According to psychiatrist Patricia Jens, Thiel did not believe she was doing anything wrong.

Jens said the woman suffered psychosis beyond her control.

But special prosecutor Patti Wabitsch said Thiel knew what she was doing.

She said Thiel told her mother to call police after the killing, and before she did it, she closed a door so nobody else could hear it.

Thiel could be institutionalized for life. But she can ask a judge every six months for a conditional release.

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