A Phoenix mother of five could face first-degree murder and child abuse charges after the death of her 1-year-old son in July, authorities said Tuesday.
Donielle King, 32, was initially arrested after police found her son, Josiah Gishie, unresponsive on the bedroom floor of a residence on the 9000 block of North 17th Street on July 17.
On Tuesday, Phoenix police said they developed probable cause that King is responsible for her son’s death and will seek a murder charge in the first degree.
King told police that she left her son at home when she went to work around 6:20 a.m. July 17 and dropped off her other four children at day care, records state. King said a babysitter was supposed to come and watch her son but never showed.
According to court documents, when police responded to the home around 4:15 p.m. that day, they noticed bruises on King’s son and said her statement was inconsistent with the injuries.
King’s son was pronounced dead at 4:47 p.m.
Autopsy results showed a major injury inside the victim’s mouth, which untreated resulted in massive blood loss, according to court documents. Multiple injuries in different stages of healing were also noted.
King never sought medical treatment for her son’s injuries, the police report says. The report recommends King be charged with murder in the first degree under the felony murder rule resulting from child abuse.
The police report indicates King has an undisclosed previous arrest but does not list any prior convictions.
King’s other four children were placed in the temporary custody of the Department of Child Safety, police said.
King’s bond was set at $50,000 in July. She remains in custody at a Maricopa County jail, police said.
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