Detroit mother charged after 18-day-old infant found dead in bathtub

22-year-old mother faces charges

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DETROIT – A 22-year-old Detroit woman is charged in connection with the death of her 18-day-old infant daughter.

The baby, Lauren Williams, was found in a bathtub about 6 a.m. Monday at a home on Schoenherr Street near Seven Mile Road. Her mother, Jaila Thomas, was taken into police custody that morning.

Jaila Thomas during his arraignment on Aug. 29, 2019. (WDIV)

Police said the mother told police she woke up and found her baby in the bathtub, unresponsive in the water. When medical officials arrived, they were unable to revive the girl.

Lauren Williams

Thomas is charged with involuntary manslaughter and second-degree child abuse. The Wayne County Prosecutor's Office said Thomas had been drinking and was alone in her apartment in the 19630 block of Schoenherr Street when she found her infant unresponsive, floating face down in the bathtub.

An infant was found dead Aug. 26, 2019 in a bathtub at an apartment in the 19600 block of Schoehnerr Road in Detroit. (WDIV)

"The alleged facts in this case are appalling," reads a statement from Wayne County Prosecutor Kym Worthy. "This baby was only in this world for 18 days. Do I really have to say this? Don't attempt to care for any infant when you are intoxicated. This shouldn't happen if a person is 'a little' intoxicated.  Please don't do it."

Thomas was arraigned on the charges Thursday morning in 36th District Court. She received a $150,000 cash/surety bond and is due back in court Sept. 12.

Tina Williams lives upstairs and remembered her encounter with the baby just two days prior.

"I just got a chance to meet the baby," Williams said. "Her name is Lauren. Beautiful baby girl. She was a lively baby. She grabbed my finger. She was full of life."

Watch the report from Monday:

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About the Authors:

Dave Bartkowiak Jr. is the digital managing editor for ClickOnDetroit.

Rod Meloni is an Emmy Award-winning Business Editor on Local 4 News and a Certified Financial Planner™ Professional.