Haitian immigrant Mother thinks 6 year old Daughter is possessed by evil spirits.
Mother resolves to rid Daughter of them. With a voodoo ritual.
Mother allegedly pours rum on the floor in a circle surrounding Daughter and then pours some more on Daughter’s head and then … sets fire to Daughter.
When Daughter is engulfed in flames, Grandmother puts the fire out with water.
Then Mother and Grandmother simply bathe and put Daughter to bed, without any medical treatment.
Not until the next day, at a relative’s urging, does Mother take Daughter to a hospital.
Daughter has second and third degree burns over twenty-five percent of her body.
Mother is charged with assault and endangering the welfare of a child.
Mother denies her guilt and tells police the incident was an accident caused by Daughter startling her while she was boiling rice.
Mother also denies awareness of Daughter’s burns.
Mother blames Grandmother for putting Daughter to bed without medical treatment.
Grandmother is charged with reckless endangerment and endangering the welfare of a child.
Daughter, still in the hospital in a medically induced coma, is now in child protective custody.
Daughter told her foster caregiver what happened.
Neighbors reportedly heard Mother and Grandmother yelling at Daughter to remain down on her knees for hours on end on various occasions.
It does not appear that any of the neighbors ever called the child abuse hotline or the police to intervene on Daughter’s behalf.