SANDY SPRINGS, GA -- It is a story that is hard to explain. An 11-year-old girl is charged with a crime that could penalize her as if she were an adult. The charge is murder. Sandy Springs Police say the girl, who is not being identified, killed a 2-year-old girl she was babysitting.
Ashlea Collier is the two year olds mother. She said her daughter Zeyda White was a busy-body. The girl's father, Tony White, said Zeyda was a mini version of himself. Zeyda's grandmother simply said she was an angel.
It is hard to justify the loss of a life so young. It's harder when it is another child who is accused of murdering her. "I've never seen a child do that to another child so I don't have any justification," said Gloria Elliott, the 2-year-old's grandmother. "I'm just numb."
Tony White fought to say the words, "I loved her with all my heart." He called Zeyda's death heartbreaking. "I don't understand how anybody could do anything like that, let alone an 11 year old girl", he said.
On Saturday night, Sandy Springs police were called to an apartment in the Dunwoody Pointe apartment complex where Zeyda was with the 11-year-old babysitter. Sandy Springs Police Lt. Steve Rose said officers received a 911 call from Zeyda's mother. The two year old was unresponsive and transported to the hospital where she died shortly after midnight.
Lt. Rose said the baby sitter told police Zeyda fell from a bed. But an autopsy on Sunday found a head wound that didn't make sense with that description. "The autopsy showed there was blunt force trauma to the head," Lt. Rose said. "That indicates a severe head injury."
Ashley Collier said she wants 11-year-old baby sitter, a daughter of a co-worker, to face the harshest penalty. "I feel like that girl should do life, I feel like that girl should not have freedom," she said. "I can't go pick up my daughter and tell her I love her. My daughter can't even grow up to life the life she wanted to."
Police have charged the 11-year-old as an adult even though she is only 11. A spokesperson for the Fulton County District Attorney's Office said "Our office is awaiting a full report from the Sandy Springs Police Department." Yvette Brown said. "Upon receipt of that report, we will conduct our own investigation and make a decision regarding the appropriate charges."