23-year-old Christopher Scott Olinger and 27-year-old Asia Markham have both been charged in connection with the death of Markham’s daughter, 16-month-old Amiena Markham. Law enforcement says the child died as a result of blunt force trauma to the chest at a home on Commor Ave in Hamtramck, Michigan.
According to police records, emergency responders were summoned to the home where the couple live with Markham’s baby daughter, Amina, shortly before noon on Tuesday. Upon arrival, police discovered Markham standing in her front yard, holding her toddler in her arms. The little girl was determined to be unresponsive, and was transported to a local hospital.
Once at the Children’s Hospital, Amina was examined by medical staff, and pronounced dead. An autopsy was conducted, and the cause of death was determined to be blunt force trauma to her chest. Blunt force trauma implies that the child’s injury was caused by a blow to the chest area severe enough to cause major internal trauma. As a result, the death was ruled a homicide.
Neighbors, who were later questioned by police, said that they had woken to the sound of anguished screaming that morning, and had run outside to see what was wrong. They discovered Markham standing on her porch, holding her daughter and crying out loud that something was wrong with her baby.
Police Suspected The Parents
The couple were quickly determined to be suspects in the child’s death and were both arrested. They were taken to the Wayne County Jail, where they are currently being held without bond. They were arraigned in the 34th District Court in Romulus, Michigan on charges of First Degree Murder and First Degree Child Abuse.
Under Michigan law, both First Degree Murder and First Degree Child Abuse are felonies punishable by any number of years up to life. If the couple are convicted on both counts, they could easily be looking at decades behind bars, if not their entire lives.
Thus far we know nothing about the couple’s side of the story. Which means that there could be a number of unknown factors that play into this event. Only one of the pair could be guilty of the crime they are both charged with, or perhaps there is a third party involved that we do not yet know about. Either way, we remind our readers to reserve judgement, as U.S. law states that defendants are considered to be innocent until proven guilty.
The couple are scheduled to appear on November 10th in the Romulus District Court for a probable cause hearing. The following week, their preliminary examination will be held in the same court. We will keep you updated as this case develops.