FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Office: (504) 712-2252
Kenner Police investigating toddler death, mother to be booked with second degree murder
Kenner - The Kenner Police Department is investigating the death of a toddler (boy, 2-years-old).
On Saturday, September 30, 2017, at 8:21 p.m., the Kenner Police Department responded to 1013 31st Street, in reference to a 2-year old who was experiencing trouble breathing. Upon first responders (Police and EMS) arrival, the toddler, identified as Chase Thomas, was found to be cold to touch and deceased. The toddler’s death was pronounced on scene.
Observations made by first responders, which included significant marks and bruising about the body, in addition, to the toddler appearing to be extremely malnourished led investigators to believe the toddler had been abused and beaten. The toddler was observed to have ligature marks to the left forearm, which indicated at some point the toddler had been bound. Numerous scratches and marks were also observed to the toddler’s back.
Kenner Police Detectives Mike Jackson and Peter Foltz, interviewed the child’s mother, identified as Twyana Thomas, 27, of 1013 31st Street, Kenner, who admitted she was the sole caregiver to the victim. When questioned about her son’s bruises, Thomas admitted to striking her son with a “slipper” as a means of punishment. When asked about the ligature marks, Thomas also admitted to tying her son up with a cloth like material on several occasions, explaining that this would hinder his movement when he was misbehaving.
Thomas was initially arrested for the crime of cruelty to a juvenile, due to the fact her son’s death was not classified and that an autopsy was pending.
In addition to Thomas’ arrest, the Kenner Police Department placed Thomas’ remaining children ages 1 (female), 4 (male), and 9 (female) into protective custody, until such time their custody was transferred to the Department of Child and Family Services (DCFS).
It should also be noted that Thomas’ claimed she is pregnant.
On Monday, October 02, 2017, after an autopsy was performed at the Jefferson Parish Coroner’s Office, it was determined that the toddler’s death was due to blunt force trauma and abuse. Due to the fact the toddler’s death will be classified a “homicide,” the criminal charges against Thomas will be upgraded to second degree murder. At the time of this press release, Thomas remains in custody, no bond has been set.
Kenner Police Chief Michael J. Glaser encourages anyone who may have any information regarding this incident or Twyana Thomas to contact Kenner Police Detective Peter Foltz at (504) 712-2253 or Detective Mike Jackson at (504) 712-2283.