Mother charged in 10-year-old daughter's death appears in Broome County Court
BINGHAMTON, N.Y. (WBNG) – The Broome County woman charged with the murder of her 10-year-old child appeared in court Tuesday morning at a pre-trial hearing.
In February 2018, Serina Madden was arrested after her 10-year-old daughter, Belladonna Loke, was found dead in a bedroom on the second floor of a home on East Windsor Road in the town of Colesville.
A state police investigator told the courtroom Tuesday that Loke's body was found on a bed partially covered by a blanket.
Loke was diagnosed with cerebral palsy and the district attorney's office believes Madden's negligence led to Loke's death.
"The allegations are that she recklessly engaged in conduct constituting severe neglect through malnutrition, starvation, lack of medical care for her daughter Belladonna who is a special needs child who relies, or who replied on others for all of her car," Broome County District Attorney Steve Cornwell said in July of 2018.
A state police investigator who testified in court says Madden admitted that Loke had not been to the doctor in "a while".
A state trooper, who also testified in court, says he found Madden at Chuck E. Cheese with her two other kids on the day the body was discovered.
Madden was asked by police to come to the State Police barracks in Kirkwood and she agreed investigators say.
No details have been released on exactly how Loke died, but Madden was later charged that day with two counts of endangering the welfare of a child.
A child protective services worker also took to the stand Tuesday and said Madden admitted to her that she knew her daughter was dead for a least one day.
Documents obtained by 12 News last year say that police believe Madden allowed her other two kids to sleep and play in the same room where Loke's body was located.
The representative from child protective services says Madden told her she was planning to go back home after her trip to Chuck E. Cheese's to call police and EMS to "take care of the body".
Madden's defense attorney, Michael Baker, believes state police interviewed Madden unfairly without reading her rights first and asking questions before an attorney was present.
The district attorney's office says evidence on Belladonna's death will be released later during the trial.
Jury selection for this case is scheduled for July 22.