BIRMINGHAM, Ala. — An 8-year-old boy has been charged with murder in the beating death of a 1-year-old girl while their mothers went out clubbing, Birmingham, Alabama, police said.
The girl’s mom, Katerra Lewis, has been charged with manslaughter in the case.
“The sad part is you had an adult mother here who had the audacity to leave her 1-year-old in the custody of several other children at the house and none of those kids were over the age of 8,” Lt. Sean Edwards said at a Tuesday news conference covered by CNN affiliate WBRC.
“It is believed while the mother and friend were at the club; the 8-year-old viciously attacked the 1-year-old because the 1-year-old would not stop crying,” a police statement said. “The 1 year old suffered from severe head trauma as well as major internal organ damage which ultimately lead to her death.”
Out for the night
According to police, Lewis and her friend left their kids alone around 11 p.m. on October 10 to go to a club. At least five children were left alone, none older than 8.
When the women returned around 2 a.m, they didn’t check on the children.
Lewis found her baby unresponsive in her crib hours later and called authorities, police said. The Jefferson County Coroner ruled the death a homicide.
The 8-year-old is in the custody of the state Department of Human Resources.
Edwards said the Birmingham Police Department has never charged someone so young with murder before.
For the infant’s mother, the cost could go well beyond any possible sentence if convicted of manslaughter.
“I think her punishment is going to be something she’ll have to live with the rest of her life, her actions that night, choosing the club over taking care of her 1-year-old,” Edwards said.