DOVER — After a two-year investigation, Delaware State Police on Friday charged two Dover parents with the death of their 16-month-old child.
The investigation began with abuse charges in 2016 and continued in April 2017 when the parents took their toddler to the hospital.
According to spokeswoman Master Cpl. Melissa Jaffe, troopers responded to Bayhealth-Kent General Hospital at approximately 3:54 a.m. on April 30, 2017, in reference to a death investigation of a child.
Then, police said, the child was at home with his father Antonio Hughes, 25, while his mother Chanel E. Green, 26, was at work.
The toddler had experienced a medical emergency when Mr. Hughes contacted Ms. Green to come to the residence in the 4000 block of Forrest Avenue, police said.
Chanel E. Green
Upon Ms. Green returning to the residence, she and Mr. Hughes privately transported the child to the hospital, where the child was later pronounced dead, police said.
The Delaware Division of Forensic Science conducted an autopsy and determined the cause of death was homicide by manner of blunt force trauma associated with child abuse.
Police said Mr. Hughes was arrested and convicted of second-degree child abuse in 2016, involving the same child, at which time a no contact order was issued.
Upon Mr. Hughes’ release from prison after that incident, Ms. Green allowed him to return to the residence, knowing that violated the no contact order, authorities said.
Ms. Green also continued to allow Mr. Hughes to be the primary caretaker for their child, police said. The no contact order was still in place on April 30 between Mr. Hughes and the child and there was also a no contact order between Mr. Hughes and Ms. Green, authorities said.
Mr. Hughes was arrested for violating that order and committed to James T. Vaughn Correctional Center on $15,000 cash only bond.
Ms. Green turned herself in to police on May 29 and was charged with criminally negligent homicide and endangering the welfare of a child. She was arraigned before Justice of the Peace Court and committed to Delores J. Baylor Women’s Correctional Institution on $16,000 cash-only bond.
On Thursday, Mr. Hughes was charged with murder by abuse. He was arraigned before Justice of the Peace Court and remained at JTVCC on $1,000,000 cash-only bond.
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