Crime & Courts

SC woman arrested, left her baby in crib to die, police say

Do you know the signs of child abuse & neglect? Here are 10 things to look for

The South Carolina Department of Social Services lists numerous signs of child abuse and neglect. Here are 10 signs to look for if you suspect a school-aged child is being abused.
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The South Carolina Department of Social Services lists numerous signs of child abuse and neglect. Here are 10 signs to look for if you suspect a school-aged child is being abused.

An infant was face down in his crib and “unresponsive,” an arrest warrant says. The mother walked away without doing anything, according to police.

South Carolina Law Enforcement Division charged Rondasha Steward, 21, of Manning with homicide by child abuse in the June 10 death of her four-month-old son.

The incident was initially called into Clarendon County Sheriff’s Office but was turned over to SLED for investigation.

Agents alleged that Steward found her son dying and “did not seek medical attention,” the warrant says. She didn’t tell anyone about her son’s state and left the house without taking him, an agent wrote.

About an hour after Steward left the home, another family member found the child. The arrest warrant doesn’t make clear whether the family member found the child dead or alive but says that Steward failing to seek medical attention “ultimately result(ed) in the child’s death.”

Agents obtained information supporting their allegation against Steward from witnesses, according to the warrant.

Steward is being held at Clarendon County Detention Center. After a June 20 hearing, she was denied bond. She could receive bond at a later court appearance.

Homicide by child abuse or neglect is punishable with a minimum of 20 years to life in prison.

David Travis Bland won the South Carolina Press Association’s 2017 Judson Chapman Award for community journalism. As The State’s crime, police and public safety reporter, he strives to inform communities about crimes that affect them and give deeper insight into victims, the accused and law enforcement. He studied history with a focus on the American South at the University of South Carolina.
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