Mon. May 20th, 2024

Two foster parents were arrested September 20, 2021 after a 1-year-old girl died in their care in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.

Police say Royalty Sonnier, who was only 17 months old, died after she was repeatedly shaken and struck by Teresita and Ruben Morgan. Both are now in custody on second-degree murder charges.

The Morgans claim that Royalty went limp after falling and hitting her head in the bath tub. The couple later admitted they repeatedly shook, slapped and struck the child in an attempt to “revive her.”

SEE ALSO: Body Found In Remote Area Of Hancock County Is Missing Louisiana Toddler

Teresita Morgan also told investigators she shook the baby on the entire drive to the hospital. The coroner’s office said she died of swelling to the brain, caused by “shaking or rotational injury with impact.”

The girl spent a week in intensive care before she was ultimately deemed brain dead and taken off life support.

According to DCFS, there are requirements any potential foster parent must meet in order to raise a foster child. That includes an extensive criminal background check, child abuse and neglect background clearances.

There’s also the completion of a home study, which Jones-Clark says has the most blind spots.

“There are too many cases per case worker to really understand what’s going on in a home. In my own experience, the visit was always scheduled. So, I can see how you can work the system and get around those visits,” she said.

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By Buffy Gunner

Independent Journalist + Business Owner | Lover of all things true crime. Mantra: Only YOU can be YOU. | Los Angeles Born |