The tragic death of 4-year-old Majelic 'Jellie' Young has shocked and horrified people across the nation. Her life was cut short by her own mother, Malikah Diane Bennett, who allegedly subjected her to a horrifying punishment that ultimately led to her demise.
After months of not seeing Jellie, a child protective services social worker requested a welfare check, leading authorities to discover the young girl's remains buried in the backyard of their North Carolina home. Shockingly, Jellie had been dead for approximately 9 months when she was found.
During the investigation, disturbing details emerged about the final days of Jellie's life. According to a search warrant, her 13-year-old sister revealed that Jellie was forced to stand in the laundry room as punishment, forbidden from sitting down or leaving. After having a bowel movement in her pants, the punishment intensified, with Jellie being forced to stand for three consecutive days until she became too weak and collapsed, hitting her head.
Her sister stated that Jellie's breathing was irregular that day, and it marked the day she passed away. Instead of seeking help, Bennett allegedly attempted CPR but failed and then washed up Jellie's body before placing it in two black plastic trash bags. The corpse was stored in Bennett's SUV for five days until the smell became unbearable.
Disturbingly, Bennett, who was pregnant at the time, purchased a shovel and had her 13-year-old daughter assist in burying Jellie's body in a shallow grave in the backyard. Police discovered a shovel and human remains on the property.
Malikah Diane Bennett was subsequently arrested and charged with first-degree murder, felony child abuse, inflicting physical injury, and felony concealing a death. The grandmother, Tammy Moffett, was also charged with concealing a death and accessory after the fact.
The case has exposed the failures of the system, as Bennett had a history of child abuse complaints and pending misdemeanor child abuse charges six months prior to Jellie's death. Family friend Lucille Puckett emphasized the need for awareness, stating that this tragedy should raise questions about how many other children may be suffering in similar situations.
The horrific treatment and ultimate death of Majelic 'Jellie' Young serve as a stark reminder of the importance of accountability and protection for vulnerable children. This devastating incident calls for a thorough examination of the system to prevent such tragedies from occurring in the future.