The mother who allegedly left her 4 children unattended in a Louisiana mobile home has been charged with 4 counts of negligent homicide after all 4 kids died when the home caught on fire Friday, according to Yahoo News.
Capt. Doug Cain, a spokesman for Louisiana Department of Public Safety, said that the fire occurred in the late hours Friday in Rayne, Louisiana, a town about 70 miles west of Baton Rouge.
The 4 deceased children were ages 2, 5, 7 and 8.
Further, their mother, Shaqueta McDade, 26, was arrested and charged with 4 counts of negligent homicide, according to Cain.
She is now being held at the Acadia County Jail.
Cain said that McDade was arrested and charged because "she is suspected of leaving the children unattended."
Dr. Mark Dawson, the Acadia Parish coroner, also said the 4 children were home alone when they died, but he has yet to receive a full report on the matter.
Cain also said that the home, which housed the 4 unattended children, was fully immersed in flames by the time firefighters arrived at the scene. Accordingly, there was nothing the firefighters could do to save the children from the conflagration.
Authorities are still investigating to determine the origin and cause of the fire.
Cain finally said he does not know where the mother was when the blaze engulfed the mobile home.
This case still seems to be in its infancy. Yet, it is pretty easy to see why the mother has been charged in this case, especially considering the sparse amount of evidence that the investigation has revealed regarding the cause of the fire.
Mothers are responsible for ensuring that their kids are safe, especially when those kids are of such a young age. Here, the mother left her kids at home unattended and the kids died amidst a fiery blaze.
Negligent homicide, is a lesser offense than first or second degree murder, and accordingly carries with it a lesser punishment. The reason that the punishment is less for a negligent homicide conviction is because the accused does not possess actual intent to kill his or her victims.
Instead, a negligent homicide charge is premised on the fact that the defendant grossly deviated from ordinary conduct and thus failed to appreciate that his or her actions could have created a substantial and unjustifiable risk that the victims could be killed.
In layman's terms a defendant will be convicted of negligent homicide if it is proven that he or she took a risk that the average person would realize could cause death, there was no good reason for doing so, and as a result a death occurred.
Here there are many risks that come along with leaving 4 children age 2-8 home alone, including the possibility that the children could try to use the stove and potentially engulf their home in flames. Accordingly, it seems to be outside the realm of ordinary conduct to leave those kids at home unattended.
These arguments, as well as others, will be what the prosecutor will have to use to convince the jury beyond a reasonable doubt that McDade is guilty of negligent homicide.
By contrast, the defense will have to demonstrate that the mother had a justifiable reason for leaving her kids home alone.
What do you think?
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