MILWAUKEE -- A Milwaukee woman has been charged with starving her 1-month-old baby to death, police said.
Milwaukee Mother Charged With Starving Her 1-Month-Old Child To Death
Vera Morehouse, 21, has five children. Police said the youngest died of starvation while strapped in a car seat in his mother’s bedroom.
Morehouse has been charged with child neglect resulting in death, police said.
When the child, Lamour, stopped breathing last summer, doctors at the hospital said the boy appeared to be the victim of dehydration and malnutrition. An autopsy later confirmed the cause of death to be starvation.
According to the criminal complaint, when police checked Morehouse's apartment, they found the oven turned up to 500 degrees with clothes drying on the oven grates and a toilet so clogged it didn't flush.
No one answered the door when WISN 12 News went to the mother’s apartment. Neither did anyone else in the building.
But in the dimly lit hallways, WISN 12 News reported that there was exposed wiring, evidence of water damage from a leaky roof and a cold wind blowing through plastic that was taped over a broken storm window.
Morehouse told authorities that Lamour slept in his car seat. Her 6-year-old told police that he made bottles for her younger children, but baby Lamour was “always sleeping.”
State officials confirmed that Morehouse was referred to child welfare agencies twice before Lamour was born. However, they said she turned down the voluntary help.
She was apparently getting some help from a local agency, state officials said. She was allowed to continue to work with that agency, WISN 12 News reported.
State officials promised a report Friday on why they did not take more forceful action and on what kind of help Morehouse was getting.
Morehouse could face up to 25 years in prison if she’s convicted, police said.
Her four other children were either staying with relatives or were in protective custody Thursday night.