Three siblings underneath Four had been inside a automobile that rolled into Deer Creek in Leland, MS on March 9. Two boys drowned, and 2-year-old sister was rescued.
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JACKSON, Miss. – Costs have been dismissed in opposition to a Mississippi mom whose two children drowned after being left in a vehicle

Jenea Monique Payne, 25, was arrested final week and charged with two counts of negligent manslaughter and one rely of kid neglect after her youngsters, Steve Smith, Four, and Rasheed Johnson Jr., 1, drowned in a submerged SUV. 

Leland Police Chief P.Ok. Nelson confirmed the fees in opposition to Payne had been dismissed Tuesday. When requested why, Nelson replied, “that was the decide’s ruling.”

Washington County District Lawyer W. Dewayne Richardson was not consulted earlier than Payne was arrested and charged. Richardson previously said he was ready on the report from the Leland Police Division earlier than he determined find out how to proceed. 

Leland Assistant Police Chief Marcus Davis beforehand mentioned Payne was charged with out consulting the district legal professional as a result of “she ended up leaving three minors unattended for a size of time when she went right into a retailer. That is unlawful in itself. That was a part of the negligence that led in the end to their deaths.”

Davis mentioned Payne informed investigators she left her three youngsters – Steve, Rasheed and Raelynn Johnson, 2 – asleep within the automobile whereas she went inside a neighborhood retailer. The automobile was turned off, Davis mentioned, however Payne left the keys within the automobile. Utilizing witness accounts, the (Jackson, Miss.) Clarion Ledger, part of the USA TODAY Community, beforehand reported the automobile was in park and working on the time of the incident. 

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The Four-year-old was in a seat belt within the entrance seat whereas the youngest two youngsters had been in automobile seats within the again, Davis mentioned. Payne was within the retailer for “5 to 10 minutes.”

Bystanders and a firefighter rushed to avoid wasting the kids, leaping into the creek and attempting to interrupt the automobile’s home windows. They managed to free Raelynn however could not save the 2 boys. The SUV was fully submerged and located hours later with the our bodies of the 2 boys inside. 

Davis mentioned investigators consider the Four-year-old put the keys within the ignition, turned the automobile on and put it in impartial, inflicting it to roll into the creek. 

Richardson was not instantly out there Wednesday and his workplace referred inquiries to Washington County Justice Court docket. Payne’s legal professional, Stan Perkins, couldn’t instantly be reached for remark.

Comply with Sarah Fowler on Twitter: @FowlerSarah


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