- (Photo: Facebook/In Loving Memory of baby Brooklyn Foss-Greenaway)
A 10-year-old girl has been charged with manslaughter after the death of an infant her mother was babysitting. She is the youngest person to be charged with manslaughter in the state of Maine in nearly 25 years.
Brooklyn Foss-Greenaway died on July 8, and police officially ruled the death a homicide on Wednesday, August 29. The victim's mother has spoken to the press about her daughter's death, which officials have blamed on the 10-year-old girl.
According to Nicole Greenaway, her daughter was drugged. Toxicology reports showed medication in her system- the same drug that the 10-year-old girl takes. Police have not released the name of the young girl in accordance with the juvenile laws. Her mother's name has also not been named as a precaution against revealing the minor's identity.
"She [also] suffocated her by putting her hands over her face. There are bruises all over her face," Greenaway told the press. She had entrusted baby Brooklyn to a friend's care and was shocked to learn her daughter had died after spending one night in the friend's home.
The baby stopped breathing and was found unconscious, according to the Associated Press. Medics were not able to revive the small girl, leaving her family with "a lot of heartache and a lot of patience," Nicole said.
Yet something looked odd to the mother, who told Fox News her daughter had a "black eye, bruises on the bridge of her nose and marks that looked like fingerprints on her cheeks."
"I feel a little bit of relief that they're charging her (the sitter's) daughter at this point, but the mom really needs to be responsible. She's the one I left my daughter with," she added.
"I'm definitely glad they're finally doing something," she told the Bangor Daily News. "I just didn't know when they were going to do it. [The last couple of days have been] pretty overwhelming."
The death of any child under 3 years old leads to an investigation in the state of Maine. Authorities began investigating immediately after Brooklyn was declared dead, and their investigation led them back to the caregiver's home and, eventually, her daughter.
"The decision on charging the girl was made after consulting with the attorney general's office. The state medical examiner's office continues to work on the case," Maine Department of Public Safety spokesman Stephen McCausland stated.
"We're not discussing her role or getting into any more details on her identity, although we feel she is responsible for the baby's death. Manslaughter was the appropriate charge," he explained.
Walter McKee, an attorney who has represented minors charged with manslaughter, told the Bangor Daily News that the young girl could either be held in juvenile court or tried as an adult. If the minor remains in the juvenile court system, she could be held in a juvenile detention facility until she is 21 and then transferred to an adult facility for the duration of her sentence.