‘I don’t know what to think’: 2nd baby death stuns neighborhood
AUGUSTA, Ga. (WRDW/WAGT) - A couple is behind bars after their 6-month-old son died in what the Richmond County coroner ruled a suspicious death.
It’s not the first time Tyrone Scott and Selena Tyler have been arrested after losing a child – or the first time neighbors have been stunned.
In February 2021, Scott and Tyler were arrested after their 1-year-old son Travis died.
Authorities say the family lived on Watkins Street. We talked to one neighbor who lives just across the street, and she’s still trying to process what she saw.
Jennifer Tollison says she didn’t get to meet 6-month-old Samson, who died Tuesday, but she says it feels all too familiar.
“I just can’t believe this happened to them, not once, but, for the second time again,” Tollison said.
The parents were charged after Travis died, and court documents say they were granted bond about a month later. But the documents don’t show much after that.
About a year later, they appear to have another child, Samson. The coroner says the boy was taken to a hospital Tuesday night after being found unresponsive at home. He later died in the hospital.
Tollison has known the Scott family for three years and says she even got to meet Travis before he passed.
“I went over there, trying to help the mom out, hold her up while they were working on the baby. His lifeless body was just laid there. I knew then he was already gone,” said Tollison. “I know being a mom and I have four boys, every one of my kids has fallen off the couch at some point when they were a baby. They didn’t stop breathing from it.”
Family members were at the home on Watkins Street on Wednesday but told us they were still just trying to process the events.
According to arrest warrants, the parents have both been charged with child cruelty in the second degree. The warrants go further to say that on top of being left unsupervised for at least two hours, Samson was exposed to extreme conditions like roaches, drugs, alcohol and broken furniture.
In the 2021 case, the couple was accused of removing the baby’s ventilator, leading to his death. Prosecutors in court said authorities found the home smelled like marijuana and smoke and that the first child had been sleeping on a pad on the floor. Defense attorneys argued against those claims.
“I don’t know what to think, what to believe right now,” Tollison said. “To live across the street from it and to see it with my own eyes, I’m going to live that for a minute now.”
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