An infant who was allegedly tortured before her death in December 2015 has tested positive for methamphetamine, police in Everett, Washington, said Jan. 5.
Jerrica D. Schreib, 19, and her 42-year-old boyfriend, Donald Coons, were arrested on Jan. 1 and are facing felony charges of mistreatment of a child after Schreib's 3-month-old daughter, identified as M.M.S. in court documents, died.
"Further charges may arise as the investigation continues,” Lt. Ryan Dalberg said regarding M.M.S.'s death, according to the Herald Net. He added that investigators are trying to determine how the drugs got into the baby's system and who is responsible for her injuries.
At the time of her death, the baby girl had numerous broken bones, including rib fractures and a broken arm that had been healing improperly, and lacerations under her chin and through her liver, court documents show. The infant also had been suffering from meningitis and pneumonia.
"This baby was tortured; there is no way anyone didn't know what was going on with this baby," an unidentified doctor is quoted as saying in the police report, according to KOMO News.
Police interviewed Coons’ daughters, aged 11, 13, and 14, all of whom were living with the couple at a motel. The girls told investigators that the baby had been “constantly crying” for weeks. The girls reportedly asked Coons and Schreib to take the baby to the doctor, but they overheard the couple "discussing concerns of the child's condition looking like child abuse if they took her to the Doctor." Coons’ three daughters have been placed in state custody.
“We are looking into the assault of other family members, including the other children who were with the couple,” sheriff’s spokeswoman Shari Ireton said, according to the Herald Net.
Everett police did not release information about the infant’s death while they were conducting interviews in December 2015 for fear that the couple would try to escape.
“There was a high risk of flight with the two suspects,” Dalberg explained. “They were basically transient.”
Coons is awaiting trial for meth possession charges from June 2015. Court records show that Coons also has a long history of involvement with child protective services, as well as allegations of drug and alcohol abuse, and domestic violence.