DETROIT (WWJ/AP) – The hearing for two Children’s Protective Services workers charged in connection with the death of a 3-year-old Detroit boy is on pause until after the new year.
The hearing is to determine whether or not Elaina Brown, 24, and Kelly Williams, 47, will stand trial on manslaughter and child abuse charges in the death of Aaron Minor, The Detroit News reported.
The social workers were charged in the child’s death, a rare but not unprecedented move. Testimony is expected to resume Jan. 4.
The 3-year-old’s decomposing body was discovered inside his mother’s apartment in the 4400 block of Trumbull after a maintenance worker reported a strong odor coming from the unit on May 25 of this year. The mother, Deanna Minor, was later found in the psychiatric unit of an area hospital and an “extensive investigation” began. She was later arrested on numerous charges including second degree murder, child abuse and failing to report a dead body. But a judge found her incompetent to stand trial.
Prosecutors allege Brown and Williams didn’t provide a safety plan or ask for a police safety check, and failed to file a juvenile court petition. They are also accused of ignoring reports that the child’s mother was increasingly incapable of caring for him due to mental illness, and that he was at a continuing risk of harm.
Officials said Brown received a referral from the mother’s mental health worker and, upon visit to the Minor home on April 21 and 21, found that there was inadequate food. She never returned to the apartment to check on the child, according to prosecutors; and, when she told her supervisor about the situation in May, nothing was done other than sending a letter to Deanna Minor asking her to contact CPS.
Deanna Minor never called and her son was found dead two weeks later.
Brown and Walker are each charged with involuntary manslaughter, a 15 year felony; child abuse second degree, a 10 year felony; and public officer – willful neglect of duty, which could add up to five years if they’re convicted.
It’s still unclear exactly how Aaron Minor died. The Wayne County Medical Examiner’s Office ruled the boy’s death a homicide; but despite an autopsy and toxicology tests, the cause of death was ruled inconclusive.
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