Adult arrested in foster care homicide

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Charges expected to be sworn over the weekend in death of 21-month-old Morinville girl

The RCMP have arrested an adult whom they expect to charge in the March homicide of a Morinville-area toddler who was in foster care.

The Friday arrest comes almost three months after the toddler was taken to hospital with serious injuries then died two days later on March 3. An autopsy conducted the following day concluded the 21-month-old girl had been a victim of homicide.

Sgt. Tim Taniguchi of RCMP K Division in Edmonton confirmed an adult was arrested Friday. Charges are expected to be sworn over the weekend, with more information being made available to the public early next week. The RCMP have not released any information about the adult or stated what charges that person faces.

“It’s an investigation that is ongoing. It is anticipated some type of charge will be sworn this weekend,” Taniguchi said.

Earlier reports stated the toddler had been in foster care for the two months preceding her death. She was also apparently shuttled between two different foster homes shortly before she died.

Neither the RCMP nor Alberta Children and Youth Services have commented on the reports. The provincial department has also declined to offer any information about the toddler’s living circumstances prior to her death.

Taniguchi said he did not know why it took investigators so long to lay charges.

“There are many investigational techniques that take time. They look at interviews, forensic evidence, all of which can take time.”

Taniguchi said the RCMP Serious Crimes Unit, working in partnership with the Morinville RCMP detachment, were investigating the file.

The toddler was first admitted to the Stollery Children’s Hospital at the University of Alberta on March 1. The RCMP started a sudden death investigation when she died two days later but upgraded it to a homicide investigation following the autopsy. The cause of death has not been released.

Alberta Children and Youth Services also launched a full investigation into the case.

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