Wayne County prosecutor announces charges in several child death cases

Prosecutor Kym Worthy holds news conference Thursday morning to announce charges


DETROIT – Wayne County Prosecutor Kym L. Worthy on Thursday announced charges against parents in five child abuse and death cases.

Worthy said the children were put in negligent situations by their parents, resulting in some of their deaths.

"The children that are dead in these cases are just as dead as if they had been shot by a bullet or battered to death," she said. 

Uncut video: Prosecutor lays out 5 child abuse, death cases

2 women charged in boy's drowning in hotel pool

Wilma Gissantaner, 51, and Cheneka Gardner, 28, both of Detroit are charged with involuntary manslaughter and second-degree child abuse for the Oct. 5, 2012, death of a 5-year-old boy.


--Wilma Gissantaner

Gissantaner and Gardner are accused of being intoxicated while watching the boy and more than a dozen other children in the pool at a birthday party.

Gissantaner noticed the boy – who was unable to hear or speak – face down in the pool. He was pronounced dead at a hospital. 


--Cheneka Gardner

Detroit mother charged in 6-month-old daughter's death

Eleanor Crosby, 21, has been charged with involuntary manslaughter and child abuse for the Dec. 4, 2011, death of her daughter.

Crosby is accused of being intoxicated and falling asleep on her daughter in a bed.


--Eleanor Crosby

Parents accused of leaving premature infant unsupervised

Terri Julite and Saad Al-Asadi, of Dearborn Heights, are accused of leaving their premature infant son in unsafe sleeping conditions that ultimately led to his death.

While the family was staying at a hotel in Allen Park in January, the parents are accused of leaving the 6-month-old boy in a crib that had medial equipment and blankets in it.

The parents were in one room and their children, 9, 12, and 6 months old , were in another room.

Julite and Al-Asadi are accused of leaving the infant in the care of his siblings, minors, and not monitoring his condition.

The infant was found dead by one of his siblings.

Julite is charged with second-degree murder, involuntary manslaughter and child abuse.

Al-Asadi is charged with involuntary manslaughter and child abuse.

Westland mother charged with infant's death

Kassie Lyn Laretz, 29, is charged with involuntary manslaughter and second-degree child abuse for the April 21, 2013, death of her 4-month-old son.

Laretz allegedly fell asleep on her son in the bed. 


--Kassie Laretz

Iowa mother charged with leaving infant alone in hot vehicle

Aisha Tahir, 29, of Dubuque, Iowa, is accused of leaving her 6-month-old son in a car in the parking lot of a Walmart in Van Buren Township on June 28, 2013.

The car windows were allegedly all closed and it was 77 degrees outside.

The child was found and taken to a hospital with a 100 degree temperature.

The boy was treated and released to the care of a social worker.

Tahir is charged with leaving a child in a vehicle resulting in physical harm.