NEWPORT, Del.—A 45-year-old woman and her 1-year-old son were found dead in their Delaware apartment just hours before the woman was supposed to appear in family court.
News outlets report police have not yet released the identities of those involved, though they have classified the deaths as suspicious.
Witness Andrea Bender, of Newport, identified the mother as her sister, Laura B. Connell, and the baby as Connell’s son, Walton.
Delaware mom, 45, ‘shot-dead her 18-month-old baby then turned the gun on herself’ https://t.co/Ga1J3N0ysd
— Daily Mail US (@DailyMail) March 14, 2019
— Barbara Christopher (@BarbaraBsd42) March 14, 2019
Bender says she arrived to drive the pair to family court Wednesday morning so Connell could surrender the baby to his father. But she says Connell didn’t come out, so she entered the apartment and found the bodies.
Laura Connell was supposed to turn custody of her 18-month-old son, Walton Connell, to the father Wednesday morning in Family Court. https://t.co/ias7iSrsjG
— Delaware Online (@delawareonline) March 13, 2019
New Castle County police Master Cpl. Michel Eckerd says the Delaware Division of Forensic Science will determine the causes of death.
Albuquerque Police Say They’re Investigating Death of Infant
Police in Albuquerque say they’re investigating the death of an infant.
They say the baby was a sibling of a child who died late last year and resulted in the arrest of their parents.
Albuquerque | APD: Death of baby in CYFD custody under investigation https://t.co/Fud6Ipu9Vt
— Mark Woods (@pdtac) March 14, 2019
Police say officers were called out Thursday on a report of an infant who was unresponsive.
The baby was transported to a hospital and pronounced dead.
An estimated 674,000 children were determined to be victims of maltreatment in 2017, according to the Department of Health & Human Services’ Administration for Children and Families.
The 28th edition of @ACFHHS‘s Child Maltreatment Report–which analyzes data from state child protective services agencies–shows a decline in the number of victims who suffered maltreatment for the second consecutive year. https://t.co/WJUfYbd7cd
— HHS.gov (@HHSGov) January 28, 2019
Of the victims, about 75 percent were neglected, 18 percent were physically abused, and 9 percent were sexually abused.
Nationwide, an estimated 1,720 children died from abuse and neglect, a decline from the 1,750 children who died from the same in the previous year.
Officials said there was an increase in the number of referrals to Child Protective Services for an investigation but that there was a decline in the number of maltreatment cases, a phenomenon they will be probing.
Of the abused children, 25 percent were younger than 1 year old. Another 52 percent were between 1 year old and 5 years old.
The children who were killed by abuse or neglect were also overwhelmingly young, with about half of the fatalities being younger than 1 year old. Boys made up 58 percent of the deaths.
Perpetrators of abuse or neglect are most often in the 25 to 34 age range. More than four-fifths (83.4 percent) of the perpetrators were between 18 and 44 years old. Perpetrators were more likely to be female.