Arkansas Mother Arrested After Three-Year-Old Child Found Dead In Washing Machine

An Arkansas mother was arrested Tuesday, July 26, on charges of child endangerment after her three-year-old daughter was found dead in the washing machine last year, according to Arkansas Matters.

On October 25, 2015, Brooke Haney, 25, of Hampton was allegedly abusing prescription medications, including benzodiazepine and fell asleep with her children in the home.

When she awoke at 1:15 p.m., she noticed her daughter, Alexis, was not in her bedroom.

The pregnant mother of three immediately contacted a neighbor, who helped search for the missing child. Not long after they discovered the child in the washing machine, which is located inside the home. Emergency services were called to the 400 block of Tina Street, where the child was found dead in the washing machine.

After paramedics performed CPR, which was to no avail, the child was immediately transported to the Medical Center of South Arkansas, where she was pronounced dead.

After interviewing the child’s 7-year-old sister, Hampton police officials determined that she and her sister were washing clothes when Alexis climbed inside the washing machine.

The child was supposed to hand over the wet clothes to her sister so that she could put them in the dryer, but little Alexis was unable to do so as the lid closed behind her, which prompted the washing machine to turn on with the child still inside.

The sister told authorities that she and sister would help with the laundry often, and their mother would allow the three-year-old to climb inside the washing machine to get the clothes out.

According to KATV, the child’s body was sent to the Arkansas State Crime Lab for an autopsy. A medical examiner stated that the results indicated that the cause of death was “scalding and thermal injuries.”

Hampton Police Chief Cole Knoedl told reporters that he’s “only been doing this for four years, but I’ve run across some pretty bad stuff. This is one of the worst that I’ve ever had to deal with.”

“It’s not something that happens often, I can tell you, it’s usually a quiet little town.”

When family and friends learned that the missing child was found dead in the washing machine, they were heartbroken, including neighbor Bobbie Holmes, who was “nearly in tears” while speaking with reporters.

Holmes stated that “it hurt my heart to know a little child died like that. I couldn’t imagine what pain she went through.”

She went to say that if she had known the children were doing laundry alone while the mother was asleep, allegedly abusing prescription medication, she “would have done the laundry for them.”

“I pray for them. That’s as about as much as I can do.”

The mother’s remaining two children are now in the custody of the Department of Human Services after Haney was taken into custody.

On July 5 of this year, Haney was convicted of two counts of endangering the welfare of a minor for the incident occurring October 2015 and a previous incident on August 21, 2015.

Last year, Haney was “pulled over by Hampton police after exhibiting behavior that indicated it was unsafe for her to drive.” Haney was traveling with two of her children and was asked by police to exit the vehicle. Upon doing do, she was then given several field sobriety tests which she did not pass.

Authorities say she was also in “possession of numerous prescription pills for which she did not have a valid prescription.” The Arkansas mother was arrested and formally charged with two felonies on Tuesday. If she is found guilty of the crimes, she could face up to six years in prison and “a fine of no more than $10,000.”

She is scheduled to make a court appearance August 10.

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