Foster parents charged with homicide by child abuse in 3-year-old’s death, police say

Around the South

SIMPSONVILLE, SC (WSPA) – The Simpsonville Police Department arrested foster parents on charges related to the death of a 3-year-old girl.

According to a police department news release, officers responded to an address on Sellwood Circle at around 2:25 p.m. on Jan. 14 in regard to an unresponsive juvenile.

The girl was taken to Prisma Health Greenville Memorial Hospital, where she was later pronounced dead.

Police, along with the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division and the Greenville County Coroner’s Office, determined during the investigation in the child’s death that she died as a result of physical abuse.

Greenville County Coroner Parks Evans identified the child as Victoria Rose Smith, 3, of Simpsonville.

Evans said an autopsy was performed and revealed that Smith died from multiple blunt force injuries. Her death has been ruled a homicide and the people charged in her death were foster parents.

The South Carolina Department of Social Services released a statement Wednesday:

“The South Carolina Department of Social Services is aware of allegations and the arrests made and is investigating along with law enforcement. The agency’s standard procedures in a case like this involved taking appropriate action with any children remaining in the home after evaluating safety and risk.”

SC Department of Social Services

Jerry A. Robinson, 34, and Ariel S. Robinson, 29, were arrested and were each charged with homicide by child abuse.

They were both taken to the Greenville County Detention Center, where they were being held without bond.

According to the release, the homicide by child abuse charge carries a sentence of 20 years up to life in prison.

The case remains under investigation by the police, SLED and the coroner’s office.

According to SLED news release about the investigation, the state agency said based on South Carolina law, “upon receipt of a report of a child death from the county coroner or medical examiner, SLED is directed to investigate and gather all information on a child fatality.”

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