Prosecutors asking: Why did these kids have to die?
County prosecutors are reviewing five suspicious deaths of young children over the past 18 months, including three that resulted in murder charges, to see whether additional tragedies can be prevented.
"A significant number of our deaths over the last 18 months are children - little children," State's Attorney Frank R. Weathersbee said last week.
He said he has asked a team of four prosecutors who handle child abuse cases to see if these cases share a common thread and he might seek new cooperation between his office, police, hospitals and social services officials.
The recent cases began in May 2004, when a man living at a Jessup motel was charged with second-degree murder in the shaking death of his 5-month-old son. Savoy Saunders, 26, has a trial set for next month.
In July 2004, a 3-year-old Glen Burnie boy, Eric Thomas, died of a methadone overdose in his home at 6452 Harrison Square. The death has been ruled a homicide but no one has been charged. "One of the residents of the home, a caregiver of the child, was using methadone," said Lt. Waltemeyer, who wouldn't elaborate because it's still an open case.
In August 2005, a newborn from Glen Burnie, La'monica Douglas, died of severe brain injuries after being shaken and hit in the head, police said. La'monica was 13 days old when she was hospitalized Aug. 2, and she died two days later.
Her mother, 22-year-old Arkia Douglas, was charged Dec. 23 with second-degree murder and is in jail.
In early December, an Arnold woman found the body of a newborn boy in a trash can outside her home. Police say the woman's 17-year-old daughter, a Broadneck High School senior, had given birth and left the child in the trash can.
No charges have been filed, but police say homicide detectives are still investigating.
Finally, on Jan. 6, 18-month-old Azakia Mitchell died in her home in Annapolis. City police say her mother, Sharmaine Williams, went to work and left her two children with her boyfriend, Gerald Edwin Parker Jr.
Just when I think that I have seen the most depraved things a human can do to another human, somebody posts a new story...........
Why is it that when a custodial parent fails to provide for a child it is called neglect and is a criminal matter. But when a non custodial parent fails to provide it is called failure to support and is a civil matter?
"Just when the caterpillar thought its world was over, it became a butterfly" ~ Michelle Knight