Sep 17, 2020
Grand Jury Returns Indictments For Mother, Girlfriend In Capital Murder Of Fort Worth 4-Year-Old
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FORT WORTH (CBSDFW.COM) – A Tarrant County Grand Jury returned indictments Wednesday related to the March death of 4-year-old Stetson Blackburn.
Stetson Blackburn (courtesy of Fort Worth PD)
Reyna Marie Sanchez and Shannon Gray were indicted on charges of capital murder of a child.
The Medical Examiner ruled the cause of death as blunt force injuries with complications.
Police said back on March 19, officers responded to a “medical call” at 3313 Bonaventure Blvd. S. where a 4-year-old boy was unresponsive and not breathing.
The child was rushed to Cook Children’s Medical Center and was pronounced deceased two days later after being declared brain dead.
The initial investigation by patrol officers identified the mother of Stetson as Shannon Gray and her girlfriend Reyna Marie Sanchez as the primary caregivers.
They were arrested on Friday, July 31.
Gray was arrested by Tennessee authorities; Sanchez was arrested by the Fort Worth Police Department Fugitive Unit.
Reyna Marie Sanchez (CBS 11)
News Source: cbslocal.com
HBCU president: Students BB gun suspension should be voided
HARVEY, La. (AP) — The president of a historically Black college has asked a Louisiana school superintendent to revoke the punishment of a fourth grader who was suspended from school because his teacher saw a BB gun in his room during a virtual lesson.
Dillard University President Walter Kimbrough urged Jefferson Parish Superintendent James Gray to reconsider the punishment of Woodmere Elementary student Ka Mauri Harrison, who was suspended for six days and almost expelled, news outlets reported.
A school behavior report said Ka Mauri, who is Black, was taking a test in his virtual class on Sept. 11 when his brother walked into the room and tripped over a BB gun that was lying on the floor. The brothers share a room.
The report said Ka Mauri left his seat, out of view of the teacher, and returned with “what appeared to be a full-sized rifle in his possession.”
The teacher tried to talk to Ka Mauri, but his computer was muted and he was subsequently kicked out of the class, the report said.
Kimbrough said Ka Mauri’s punishment exceeded the offense and that this type of disciplinary action may harm Ka Mauri in the future.
Kimbrough wrote a letter to Gray expressing his understanding of the difficulties schools are facing during the pandemic. However, he wondered whether the school system had adequate policies for situations like Ka Mauri’s.
School Board member Simeon Dickerson seconded that, saying that the school should have backed off once they realized it was a BB gun.
Both men urged Gray to hold another disciplinary hearing, remove the suspension from Ka Mauri’s record, update the system’s policies and issue a public apology.
Gray wouldn’t comment on Kimbrough’s letter. A school system spokesperson said nothing has changed regarding Ka Marui’s suspension. Other school board members also wouldn’t comment.
“You have this overcriminalization of Black boys,” Kimbrough said. “As the father of an 11-year-old boy, I want my son to be viewed through a lens of innocence if he makes a mistake, and not have to worry about him being suspended or expelled, or because this is America today, possibly killed.”
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