The court said Tonya Peterson’s rights were violated because a Wayne County judge gave a wrong jury instruction.
In 2018, an 11-month-old child fell through a hole in the floor of Peterson’s house and drowned in a flooded basement. Seven children were living there, but no adults were present at the time, the court noted.READ MORE: MDOT Announces Ongoing Construction For I-75
Peterson didn’t charge rent nor have a business relationship with Dasiah Jordan, whose child died, the appeals court said.
Judge Wanda Evans “erroneously instructed the jury that (Peterson) had a legal duty ‘to provide a safe environment’ to the victim,” the court said Thursday.
“Although the conditions within defendant’s home were undeniably dangerous, defendant did not owe the victim … a common-law duty of affirmative care to make the home safe,” the court said.READ MORE: Lions Release LB Christian Jones, Re-Sign DB Mike Ford
Peterson, 31, served 17 months in prison before she was released on parole in September.
Jordan, 29, pleaded guilty to involuntary manslaughter and was sentenced to a year in jail.
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