Two Michigan social workers were charged on Nov. 14 with child abuse and manslaughter in the death of a 3-year-old boy.
The decomposing body of the child, Aaron Minor, was found in a bed inside his apartment on May 25, reports People magazine.
The social workers from Child Protective Services, Elaina Brown, 24, and her supervisor Kelly Williams, 47, were charged with failing to protect the boy after they had identified him in April as “vulnerable” and “at risk.”
Authorities allege that Brown and Williams ignored reports that Aaron’s mother, Deanna Minor, was incapable of caring for him because of her mental health issues.
Brown paid a visit to Deanna Minor in April after receiving a referral from her therapist, according to police, who allege that Brown reported details of the visit to Williams and sent a letter to Minor requesting that she contact Child Protective Services. There was no response to the letter, and Brown allegedly never returned to the apartment to check on Aaron.
The police statement summarized the case:
“It is alleged that Ms. Brown and her supervisor, Ms. Williams, were grossly negligent and reckless in performing their duties because they failed to: 1) provide a safety plan to protect Aaron; 2) respond and follow through on reports of the mental health workers; 3) ask the police for a safety check; 4) file a petition with the juvenile court authorities; and 5) follow the CPS policy and procedure.”
In a statement, Prosecutor Kym Worthy said: “We charged this case after much thought and deliberation. We did not make this decision lightly. We must seek to hold these defendants responsible for their alleged inaction. The ultimate result in this case was the death of a child that never should have happened.”
In August, Deanna Minor was charged with her son’s murder. She is also facing child abuse charges. She is currently at a psychiatric ward in Wyandotte, Michigan, reports WJBK.
Brown and Williams are due back in court on Nov. 21.