4-Year-Old Dies After Excessive ‘Punishment,’ Mom Charged With Murder

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After a 4-year-old little girl was found dead, it was determined that she died of exhaustion. Making the tragic death all the more horrifying, her senseless passing was allegedly the result of an excessive “punishment,” dished out by her own mother. But just when you think it can’t get any worse, it does.

Majelic Young
Majelic ‘Jellie’ Young was found buried in a shallow grave at her mother’s Charlotte, North Carolina home. (Photo Credit: Google Maps)

Majelic ‘Jellie’ Young, a 4-year-old North Carolina girl, met a terrifying end when her own mother allegedly dished out a punishment that led to her death. After family members had not seen the girl for many months, a child protective services social worker called 911, requesting a welfare check. The call brought police to the home on Braden Drive in Charlotte, where the child’s mother lived with at least eight children. There, authorities found Jellie’s remains buried in the backyard.

Shockingly, Jellie had already been dead for approximately 9 months when her remains were found, police said, but that was just one of many disturbing details that would be uncovered during the investigation into the child’s death. Detectives interviewed a man who reportedly told them that the child’s mother had informed him that Jellie was dead, but that she did not report her death because the child had injuries on her body and she was afraid she would get in trouble. But, it was so much worse than even he realized.

Majelic Young
Majelic ‘Jellie’ Young (Photo Credit: Facebook)

The Punishment:

Search warrants soon revealed the sad and painful final days the 4-year-old child had to endure while also uncovering a crime of mindblowing proportions that would lead to her mother’s and other’s arrest. According to the warrant, Jellie’s 13-year-old sister told detectives that days before Jellie’s death, the little girl “was forced to stand in the laundry room as punishment and was not allowed to sit down or leave. Afterward, she had a bowel movement in her pants.”

However, that didn’t put an end to the punishment. Instead, Jellie was forced to stand for three days, “getting so weak that she fell out of the back door, hitting her head on the ground.” After collapsing from apparent exhaustion and hitting her head, Jellie’s breathing was described as “off and on” by her sister, who told police that was the day the girl finally died, but the nightmare was far from over.

After Jellie stopped breathing, her mother, 31-year-old Malikah Diane Bennett, allegedly attempted CPR on the child but could not do it. Realizing the child was dead, Bennett then washed up her body and stuffed her corpse in two black plastic trash bags, according to WSOC-TV 9. Bennett then allegedly stored the remains in her SUV, where the body remained for about five days before the stench of decomposition became unbearable.

The 13-year-old sister of Majelic ‘Jellie’ Young was forced to help dispose of the body:

At that point, Bennett — who was reportedly pregnant with another child at the time — went out, bought a shovel, and dug a hole in the backyard. Disturbingly, the mother then had her 13-year-old daughter help put Jellie’s corpse in the shallow grave and cover it with dirt. During a police interview, Bennett allegedly told them that she dropped Jellie off with another relative 9 months before and had not seen her since. When police searched the property, however, they found a shovel and human remains.

Malikah Diane Bennett (Photo Credit: Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department)

Two family members arrested in relation to the child’s death:

The girl’s body was reportedly covered in bruises, had black eyes, and serious injuries. Malikah Diane Bennett was arrested and charged with first-degree murder, felony child abuse, inflicting physical injury, and felony concealing a death after being accused of killing her daughter and trying to cover it up, the Daily Mail reported. Days later, Jellie’s grandmother, 53-year-old Tammy Moffett, was also charged with concealing a death and accessory after the fact.

The mother had pending child abuse charges against her:

“I’ve worked homicide most of the last 10 years and I can tell you this case is deeply disturbing,” Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department Lieutenant Bryan Crum said of the crime during a press conference. Making this case even worse, Bennett had a history of child abuse complaints involving her and her children, including three pending misdemeanor child abuse charges from just 6 months before Jellie’s death.

Tammy Moffett (Photo Credit: Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department)

Calling what Majelic ‘Jellie’ Young went through “torture,” family friend Lucille Puckett, who was close to this case since the child’s remains were found, said people need to hear what happened to the little girl. “To actually see the search warrant, it hurt me,” Puckett explained. “I don’t just see this only happening to Jellie. We don’t know how many children are lost in the system or could’ve been facing the same situation.” Indeed, this case should leave us all wondering about the system.

A mother who was already facing multiple child abuse charges was allowed the freedom and opportunity to force a 4-year-old to stand for three days before she collapsed from exhaustion, hit her head, and stopped breathing. This could have been prevented if Malikah Diane Bennett had been held accountable for the child abuse she allegedly committed 6 months before allegedly killing her daughter with an excessive punishment that resulted in what had to be an excruciating death. There is simply no excuse for this.