The father and stepmother of a 5-year-old girl found dead inside of her home were arrested and charged with murder, torture and child abuse.
According to reports, 5-year-old Mackenzie Maison was found dead inside of her Port Huron, Michigan, home on Tuesday night, malnourished and weighing just 25 pounds. She had suffered a severe infection, bruising and pneumonia.
Mackenzie “suffered profound medical trauma as a result of neglect that showed weeks if not months of neglect,” and “purposeful withholding of nourishment as well as any medical attention she may have needed,” said Senior Assistant Prosecutor Mona Armstrong.
Mackenzie was pronounced dead after being rushed to a Detroit hospital. Her 3-year-old sister was also found, along with two other children. The toddler weighed just 17 pounds.
The children’s father, Andrew Maison, was arrested along with their stepmother, Hilery Maison. Both were arraigned on Friday on charges of murder, two counts of torture and two counts of first-degree child abuse.
Armstrong said that she believes the neglect of the two sisters was done in a “purposeful, systematic manner."
“I would like to fight with this, there is no truths in most of what was said,” Hilery said during her arraignment. “I've given the detectives everything, every detail of what happened that day, there was no intention on any of this."
Mackenzie’s heartbroken mother, Shelby Coffee, said she often tried to visit her children but was always given excuses as to why she couldn’t.
“It was always excuses,” she said. “Too busy, working, they're not here.”
“She was the brightest little girl. Very independent, beautiful... and she was my world,” she said. “Watch out for your kids. No matter what, no matter if you think you can trust each other or not. Make sure you watch out for your kids, because one day you can turn around and you'll be getting a phone call just like I did.”
Photo Credit: Daily Mail