Rock Springs Man Gets 8-12 Years In Prison For Toddler’s Drug Death

A Rock Springs Man will face 8-12 years in prison for keeping illegal drugs in his home where his toddler son could access them. The 2-year-old died.

Clair McFarland

July 10, 20232 min read

Daniel scott james 35

A Rock Springs man has pleaded guilty to involuntarily killing his 2-year-old son and will spend about a decade in prison. 

Daniel Scott James, 36, has pleaded guilty to one count of involuntary manslaughter for keeping illicit drugs in his home where his toddler son could access them. The boy died Oct. 21, 2022, after a night of vomiting and rocking in his mother’s arms, according to court documents and testimony. 

Sweetwater County District Court Judge Richard Lavery accepted James’ guilty plea and sentenced him to between eight and 12 years in prison, with 195 days’ credit for the time James already has served in jail. 

James originally wept as he pleaded not guilty in February and was told he wasn’t allowed to see his other young children.

Lavery recommended that James participate in and complete all therapeutic and rehabilitation programs the Wyoming Department of Corrections suggests.

He also imposed a $200 surcharge to the Wyoming Crime Victim’s Compensation fund, a court fee of $40, a $10 civil legal service fee and $75 for an addiction index test. 

James owed $500 in public defender fees, but Lavery waived that cost recognizing James’ inability to pay it. 

Pursuant to a plea agreement, the judge dismissed a felony marijuana-possession charge and a felony charge of Xanax possession

Clair McFarland can be reached at

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Clair McFarland

Crime and Courts Reporter