Three-year-old child climbs into washing machine and dies after it turns on
Brooke has been charged with two felony counts of endangering the welfare of a minor after a two-month-long investigation.
In Arkansas, three-year-old Alexis Haney climbed into a washing machine and died while her mother Brooke, under the effects of prescription tranquilisers, napped on the couch.
The police said that the children had been helping with laundry when it happened.
“The washing machine, which the family used as a dirty clothes hamper, was programmed to switch on when the lid closed,” said a Washington Post report. “After the clothes were clean, one child would climb into the open machine and pass the wet clothes to another, who would then toss them into the dryer.”
That had been their routine, and upon Alexis closing the lid, hot water poured in.
According to a probable cause affidavit in Calhoun County Circuit Court, Alexis died from “scaling and thermal injuries.”
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“It hurt my heart to know a little child died like that,” the Haney’s neighbour Bobbie Holmes told NBC affiliate KARK. “I couldn’t imagine what pain she went through.”
As it turns out, Brooke Haney, the 25-year-old mother, had previously been arrested and charged with endangering the welfare of a minor in two separate incidents.
Court documents revealed that the first instance was when she drove under the influence with her seven-month-old in the back seat.
Hampton police said they pulled Brooke over because she was causing other cars to move to the side of the road, said the Washington Post report. Officers determined that she was “exhibiting behaviour indicating she was under the influence of prescription medication."
Brooke was on the medication called benzodiazepines, a drug commonly used to treat anxiety and insomnia, authorities determined. The mother didn’t possess a prescription for the drugs, however.
The second incidence was when Alexis died.
Police became aware of the situation after they received a call saying there had been a child severely injured in a washing machine incident.
According to reports, the mother of three had been caring for ten-month and three-year-old children when she decided to take a nap. When she woke up, she noticed that Alexis had gone missing.
Running to a neighbour’s house for help, they looked for the child and found her in the washing machine.
Alexis was rushed to the hospital, but was pronounced dead. Brooke also revealed to the police the family’s laundry routine.
“If I would have known that, I could have done something,” Bobby Holmes said. “I would have did the clothes for them, you know.”
Brooke has been charged with two felony counts of endangering the welfare of a minor after a two-month-long investigation. Her charges carry a maximum penalty of up to six years in an Arkansas Department of Correction facility.
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