A man and a woman will most certainly spend decades in prison if found guilty of beating their minor daughter to death in an incident that happened earlier this month. The girl’s father and stepmother were arrested and charged after she was pronounced dead in the hospital, where she had been taken with serious injuries.
The victim, who was identified as 5-year-old Pradeline Delinois, was admitted to a hospital in Washington, D.C. after she was found unconscious in her home in the Capitol Heights suburb on August 18. Several local news outlets that covered the case confirmed that the girl was admitted to hospital with severe injuries all over her body and that her condition was very critical. After she was pronounced dead, doctors at the hospital determined that the girl’s injuries were caused by blunt force trauma.
In a short period of time after the investigation was started, the local authorities learned that the incident happened while the girl was in the care of her stepmother, Ornelie Charles, 42, while the father was reportedly working night shift. In the follow-up days, the couple was arrested.
The girl’s death was classified as a homicide, and the information about the couple’s arrest was confirmed by the local authorities earlier this week.
Per a report by the Washington Post citing court records, the doctors at the hospital where she was admitted immediately noticed that the little girl was severely underweight. When she arrived at the hospital, she had been wearing a soiled diaper and had a visible scratch above her left eye. The little Pradeline had suffered extensive injuries that included fractured ribs and bruises all over her body, the results of the autopsy showed. The parents, however, denied any knowledge of how the victim sustained the injuries.
It was later discovered that that was not the first for the Maryland girl to be beaten by her parents. According to the local authorities, the father, 44-year-old Pradel Delinois, has been beating the girl whenever she was crying. The information was given by another child who was living in the same home as the couple and the victim. The same source also informed the investigators that the girl had been beaten by the stepmother on numerous occasions in the past, and that Charles had beaten the girl days prior to her death. When first responders arrived at the home, Charles informed the police that she was the primary caregiver for Pradeline and two other children living at the house.
Child Protective Services removed the other two children, both minors, from Charles and Delinois’s custody.
Delinois is charged with child abuse resulting in the death and neglect of a minor. Charles is charged with child abuse resulting in the death, assault, and neglect of a minor.