A nine-year-old Florida girl died Saturday after her 325-pound cousin allegedly sat on her as a form of discipline.
The Pensacola News Journal reported that Veronica Green Posey, 64, was charged with homicide and cruelty toward a child in connection with Dericka Lindsay’s death. Lindsay was found unresponsive in her Pensacola home at 1:35 p.m. and transported to a local hospital, where she was pronounced dead.
According to an arrest report obtained by the paper, Posey told the responding deputy that she sat on Lindsay as punishment for “being out of control.” However, things took a grim turn when Lindsay reportedly told the adults present that she couldn’t breathe. That’s when Posey is said to have gotten up and performed CPR.
Posey also told the deputy that she weighed about 325 pounds.
The News Journal also reported that police arrested the victim’s parents, Grace Joan Smith, 69, and James Edmund Smith, 62, and charged them with child neglect for not reporting the abuse. The biological relationship between the parents and the child is unclear. Grace is also facing cruelty to a child charges but it’s unclear whether it’s related to Saturday’s incident.
Florida Department of Children and Families (DCF) secretary Mike Carroll revealed in a statement to the local paper that the agency previously communicated with the Pensacola family.
“Dericka’s death is appalling and DCF will continue coordinating with the Escambia County Sheriff’s Office to hold anyone responsible for her death accountable,” the statement read.
“As the family has a prior interaction with the child welfare system, a thorough quality assurance review will be conducted to review all prior interactions this family has had with the child welfare system.”
Jail records indicated that Posey was released after posting $125,000 bond. Grace and James are currently jailed on $75,000 and $50,000 bond, respectively.
[Featured Image: Escambia County Jail]