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18 Months

It is always sad when someone passes away. No matter the age or the circumstance, it is a hard thing to handle. When it is an innocent 18 month old child, it is especially hard to accept. When it is at the hands of an abuser, it is unacceptable.

Eighteen months was all she had.

This happened right in our own back yard not too long ago: Wednesday, March 7. Little 18 month old Barbra Adams passed away just ten days  after a stack of wooden kitchen chairs fell on her after her baby sitter allegedly forced her to walk on a broken leg to throw out her dirty diaper. The babysitter was the child’s mother’s boyfriend.

This was not the first incident of neglect that the babysitter, 27 year old Adrian Morgan Allen, had demonstrated while watching the young girl nor was he new to the court and prison systems. Recently released from prison on drug charges, Allen also had the two other children living in the home removed from his “care.”

Allen told police he thought Barbara was dead. She was unconscious and barely breathing, according to the affidavit. Allen then allegedly took her to the bathtub and poured cold water on her head. The baby did not respond.

Allen said he checked the child’s heartbeat, which was faint. When she took a shallow breath, she gasped, he allegedly told police. Allen then brought the girl to the living room couch, where she started convulsing.” http://www.phillyburbs.com/my_town/bensalem/month-old-allegedly-assaulted-by-babysitter-dies/article_cbbd4953-9ce6-59ba-b4c4-c043594da008.html

Aside from the incident that caused Barbra’s death, it was concluded at St. Mary Medical Center that she had other severe injuries each in a different stage of healing. The child suffered multiple broken ribs, a broken forearm, bruises on her back, and bite marks on her triceps. Upon arrival to St. Mary on March 7, she had “severe, blunt injuries to the skull” which required immediate surgery. According to an inside source at St. Mary, the injuries Barbra sustained were so severe they had to perform immediate surgery to try to stop the internal bleeding. St. Mary does not typically operate on children of that age.

The inside source also indicated that upon arrival of cases of this nature, the staff cannot jump to conclusions of child abuse, but also can never rule it out. As more and more evidence was revealed, it was obvious that little Barbra had been and was being abused and neglected and the proper authorities were called immediately.

It is difficult to lose a child no matter what. I’ve seen first hand the toll it takes on the parents and the day to day struggle dealing with the painful questions: Why? What could I have done? In sheer accident these questions are hard enough, but in cases like Barbra Adams, it makes you angry. All violence and abuse is senseless, but it is just so hard to see such a young innocent life end in such a senseless, neglectful, and awful way.

Currently, Allen is held at Bucks County Prison on $1 million/10% bail charged with first degree felony aggravated assault.  

To read the full article visit http://www.phillyburbs.com/my_town/bensalem/month-old-allegedly-assaulted-by-babysitter-dies/article_cbbd4953-9ce6-59ba-b4c4-c043594da008.html

Brittney Nowak
AWP Intern

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