Del City Girl Dies From Asthma, Caretakers Arrested
DEL CITY, Oklahoma - Del City investigators say two family members neglected a little girl who died from asthma complications.
Court documents say suspicion began in November, when a Del City elementary school nurse sent the girl home with the suggestion she see a doctor for breathing problems.
In December, the nurse did the same thing again, suggesting the girl see a medical professional. Later that evening, the girl’s great-grandmother called 911, reporting that the girl had asthma, was not breathing, and needed an ambulance.
The little girl was then taken to OU Children’s Hospital where she died.
According to reports, the medical examiner determined the cause of death was complications from asthma.
Del City Police began investigating.
“The biggest problem with this case is this little girl's death was preventable. With some simple medical care this child would be with us today,” Del City Police Captain Bradley Rule said.
According to documents, the girl was in the care of her aunt, Meta Hudspeth, and great-grandmother, Vanuda Holloman.
When questioned initially, both women denied knowing the girl had asthma, according to police. However, school records and the 911 call indicated the guardians knew of the asthma diagnosis.
Both women eventually confessed to neglect, according to investigators.
Del City Police say no medical records or medicine was found to show any treatment for the girl’s asthma.
Other children in the home told police they saw the girl suffer from the asthma attack for several hours, breathless and urinating on herself.
The child witnesses also claimed they saw the victim break her arm months earlier, then cry for three days, receiving no medical attention.
Documents say doctors noticed the arm injury on the child when she died.
Holloman and Hudspeth were arrested Wednesday on child neglect complaints.
“They said they didn't have the money or insurance. As a side note, all of us know that Children’s Hospital will treat a child even if you can't pay,” Rule said.
Police say both suspects are certified nursing assistants.
The children in their care were placed in Department of Human Services custody, according to police.