Social workers 'negligent' in boy's death; charged with manslaughter

Two state social workers are facing a long list of charges in the death of a 3-year-old Detroit boy.

Prosecutors calling them "grossly negligent" and "reckless in performing their duty" of keeping the child safe.

In August, 28-year-old Deanna Minor was charged with murder and child abuse in the death of her 3-year-old son. Aaron Minor's decomposing body was discovered inside the family's apartment - his mother was located at a psychiatric hospital - she had not been well for some time.

"(She has) severe depression," said Kyra Mylum, Minor's aunt. "She's been institutionalized before for depression."

Now three months later - these women are  charged in the case as well - 24-year-old Elaina Brown - a social worker with child protective services and her supervisor, 47-year-old Kelly Williams - both charged with involuntary manslaughter and child abuse and neglect of duty - for failing to save young Aaron.

"She wasn't capable of taking care of the baby - we knew that but we wasn't expecting nothing like this to happen," said Robert Mylum, the victim's great grandfather.

Mylum says his daughter, Deanna Minor's mother, had expressed concerns the social workers were not doing their job.

"She had been saying that these social workers wasn't doing what they should have been doing - wasn't out there to see that the baby was okay," he said. "She said this and it's proven that it's true."

The Wayne County prosecutor alleges that in April, Brown received a referral from Deanna Minor's mental health worker. Brown went to the home and determined there was not enough food in the house, alerted her supervisor - but failed to ever follow up, leading to  Aaron's death.

Both Brown and Williams were released on $25,000 personal bonds - and ordered to have no contact with children while on the job.

A spokesman with the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services says both women have been suspended with pay noting that CPS workers are committed to protecting vulnerable children from abuse and neglect.

The attorney for Kelly Williams tells FOX 2:

"It is shocking that charges would be brought against those who have chosen to dedicate their lives to saving children. The death of a 3-year-old child is a devastating tragedy; however, not every tragedy is the result of a crime."

The women are due back in court later this month in Detroit.

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