The Facts

Woman arrested in child’s death

By Michael Wright
The Facts
Published October 04, 2002

ANGLETON — Police Thursday arrested the fourth and final mother charged in connection with circumstances surrounding the death of a 2-month-old girl.

Tamesha Mills, 27, of Angleton surrendered to police Thursday afternoon to face three counts of abandoning a child. Bond was set at $15,000.

Tierra Lashay Jones died early Aug. 18 of blunt force trauma to the head and asphyxiation after being left with 11 other children in the care of a 12-year-old girl.

Mills, along with Marlaina Brooks, Vickie Gill and Alexandria Bass left a total of 13 kids alone in an apartment Aug. 17 while they went out to a bar, according to police reports. Gill’s 12-year-old daughter has been charged with reckless injury and is currently in Children’s Protective Service Custody, as are the other 11 children in the apartment that night.

Brooks, 24, is charged with injury to a child by omission, a second degree felony. If convicted she faces up to 20 years in prison and a $10,000 fine.

The other three women are all charged with abandoning a child. If convicted, they each face up to two years in jail on each count and fines of up to $10,000.

District Attorney Jeri Yenne said she doesn’t anticipate any more arrests in the case. She said the welfare of the baby-sitter is her primary concern.

“We said from the beginning our main goal was to provide the services of the juvenile system to the 12-year-old,” Yenne said. “I was not going to overlook the primary people I consider responsible for setting these events in motion.”

At a child custody hearing in August, Mills said leaving the children alone was a “bad call.”

According to testimony in that hearing and interviews afterwards, Gill left her three children in the care of Bass, who is her sister, but Bass, Mills and Brooks decided to go out about 10 p.m.

Mills said she and Bass tried to take her children to her grandmother’s house, but she wasn’t home. Mills brought them back to Bass’s apartment and Bass saw the children to the door and then left with Mills and Brooks, according to testimony at the child custody hearing.

Mills and Gill were the only mothers to protest a judge’s decision to award custody of their children to CPS.

Mills told the judge she would comply with anything CPS requested, but she thought she should be reunited with her children immediately.

“I feel that the best action is for my children to be with me,” Mills said at the hearing. “I am a working mother, I am a mother to my kids. It was a bad call. I’ve learned from my mistake.”

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