February 11, 2023

USA: Detroit Law Enforcement And CPS Were Aware Of Abuse Before 5-Year-Old Killed And 3-Year-Old Hospitalized. Detroit Mom, Stepdad Charged With Felony Murder, Torture, Conspiracy To Commit Torture, 2 Counts Of First-Degree Child Abuse.

Click On Detroit | Local 4 | WDIV published Januar 26, 2023: Officials were aware of abuse before 5-year-old killed, 3-year-old hospitalized. A 5-year-old child was killed and a 3-year-old child was hospitalized after enduring abuse.
Click On Detroit | Local 4 | WDIV published February 7, 2023: Why Ethan Belcher’s body is still at the Wayne County Morgue 16 days after his death. Ethan Belcher died 16 days ago due to child abuse, and his body is still at the Wayne County Morgue. The Detroit child’s family attempted to bury him last week, but that did not happen.
Click On Detroit | Local 4 | WDIV published February 6, 2023: Investigation into Detroit child's death uncovers startling details about welfare system. 5-year-old Ethan Belcher recently died because of child abuse. His aunt called CPS concerned about his safety in his parent's home. On Monday, the state revealed there are hundreds of deaths of children who were involved in Michigan's child welfare system.
Click On Detroit | Local 4 | WDIV published January 31, 2023: Deadly abuse of 5-year-old boy has Michigan senator working to change CPS information law. Local 4 is continuing its look into the death of 5-year-old Ethan Belcher and whether changes are needed within Michigan’s Child Protective Services.
Here is a snippet of the reporting from last video above, "These family situations are a legal minefield. But Republican State Senator Jim Runestad of White Lake says Child Protective Services hides behind a secrecy law EXEMPTING IT FROM FREEDOM OF INFORMATION requests to understand what's going wrong. He's looking to change that." Then the Replican Senator said, "This is the only area that I'm aware of that they can completely bottle up and stonewall any information about what went wrong in a case so that we can't figure out how to fix it." (emphasis mine)
Click On Detroit News
written by Derick Hutchinson, Lead Digital Editor
Wednesday January 25, 2023

DETROIT – A Detroit couple has been charged with murder, child abuse, and torture in the death of their 5-year-old son and abuse of their 3-year-old son, prosecutors said.

Officers were called at 1:07 p.m. Sunday (Jan. 22) to a home in the 14600 block of Spring Garden Street, which is in the area of 7 Mile Road and Chalmers Street on Detroit’s east side.

When they arrived, police saw 5-year-old Ethan Belcher being taken to an EMS truck. He was brought to a nearby hospital and pronounced dead.

A 3-year-old boy was found at another location with bruises on his head and face, according to authorities. Medical officials took him to the hospital for treatment.

Ethan’s aunt, Ashley Belcher, told Local 4 she reported the abuse to authorities last year. She said she took photos of his bruises and cuts and gave them to investigators. She said Lincoln Park police and Child Protective Services opened an investigation, but ultimately the kids ended up back in the parents’ care.

“We could have saved his life,” said Ashley Belcher. “Had they just listened. It wasn’t just me. It was other people who reported it, and they got sent to take some classes, and they got these children back, and it was a house of terror.”

Belcher said Ethan’s body was found with bruises and burns.

“He has over 100 cigarette burns on his body, he had frostbitten feet, and he was missing a toe that never was taken care of,” Belcher said.

Shane Robert Shelton, 27, and Valeria Lynn Hamilton, 27, both of Detroit, are accused of physically abusing both boys. Hamilton is Ethan’s biological mother, and Shelton is his stepfather, officials said.

“The alleged facts in this case are extremely alarming,” Wayne County Prosecutor Kym Worthy said. “The evidence will come out in court.”

Shelton and Hamilton are both charged with felony murder, torture, conspiracy to commit torture, and two counts of first-degree child abuse.

They were arraigned Wednesday at 36th District Court and remanded to the Wayne County Jail. A probable cause conference is scheduled for 8:30 a.m. Feb. 1, and a preliminary examination is scheduled for 1:45 p.m. Feb. 8.

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