‘Girl, I’m frustrated. I’m sick of this little b****. I hate this little b****. She makes me want to punch her in the face.”
24-year-old Daycare worker admits killing eight-month-old girl in her care
Leah Walden suffocated the baby with a blanket after complaining she wouldn’t sleep as CCTV shows dying child thrashing her legs to escape
The ‘baby killing’ care giver was sent away for life on Tuesday by Baltimore City Circuit Judge Althea Handy
Little Reece Annette Bowman was killed by Leah Walden, 24, at the Rocket Tiers center in Baltimore in May 2017
Walden suffocated Bowman with a blanket in the horrifying incident
After pleading guilty to first-degree murder, Walden was sentenced her to life with all but 70 years suspended.
The court heard she was frustrated at Bowman because she wouldn’t fall asleep
Walden will be eligible for parole in 35 years
Evil care giver: Leah Walden, 24, [left], was said to have been frustrated at eight-month-old Reece Bowman [right[, because the baby wouldn’t go to sleep. She then smothered her to keep her quiet
A daycare worker who admitted killing an eight-month-old girl by smothering her with a blanket because she wouldn’t go to sleep, has been sent away for life in Baltimore, Maryland.
Day care worker Leah Walden was said to have been frustrated at the infant because the baby wouldn’t go to sleep.
Walden, 24, admitted the murder of little Reece Bowman, at Rocket Tiers Learning Center, Baltimore in May 2017, at a court hearing on Tuesday, wbaltv reports.
Walden was sentenced to 70 years in prison for the horrifying killing by Judge Althea Handy who sobbed as she handed it down.
In heartbreaking scenes, Reece’s father Justin Bowman wept as he told the court: ‘I will never see my girl take her first steps, hold her, kiss her, comfort her when she’s scared, hear her say “I love you”. I am devastated.’
Turning to Walden and pointing he said: ‘Reece Annette Bowman accomplished more in her short life than this woman ever will.’
Walden tried to explain her actions by saying she had snapped and had not been given appropriate training or assistance for her job.
Assistant State’s Attorney Anne Colt Leitess said Walden had told a co-worker, ‘Girl, I’m frustrated. I’m sick of this little b****. I hate this little b****. She makes me want to punch her in the face.’
The court heard that Walden returned from lunch and became frustrated that baby Reece would not sleep.
She then slapped her and pinned her down before piling blankets over her face and suffocating her, at the Rocket Tiers Learning Center in Baltimore city.
Walden initially claimed she had fed the baby and put her in a crib for a nap before coming back 45 minutes later to find the girl unresponsive.
Walden was captured on the day care center’s surveillance video torturing baby Reece Annette Bowman
But her argument unraveled after the center’s CCTV revealed the truth.
Walden was seen covering the baby with ‘excessive blankets for long periods of time’.
She was also filmed covering the child’s face with a pillow, violently snatching the baby and slapping her.
CCTV footage played in court showed the baby kicking wildly as the enraged daycare worker smothered her with a blanket.
Heart broken: Reece’s parents Amy and Justin Bowman moved out of their home and left their jobs in Baltimore after their daughter’s murder, unable to stay in the city and be reminded of the experience
Crime scene: After the wilful murder of their ward, the Rocket Tiers Learning Center in Baltimore where the incident took place has since shut down
Composing herself, she said: ‘I’m just reflecting on everything I heard. There are tears everywhere in this courtroom.’
Walden accepted that the murder was premeditated but said: ‘There was not a time in my heart that I wanted this to happen.’
Her sister Samantha Carlton told the court: ‘She’s not a monster. She’s not an evil person. She was frustrated.’
Then she turned to the Bowmans and said: ‘I’m so sorry. With all my heart, I’m sorry.’
Mr Bowman told the court that Reese’s older brother Sawyer also attended the center and was upstairs when she was killed.
Memorial for Reece Bowman outside Rocket Tiers Learning Center in Baltimore, where the murder took place
‘There was not a time in my heart that I wanted this to happen.’: Walden who on the daycare’s website [image], said she liked to care for ‘babies who love me as much as I love them’. accepted in court that the murder was premeditated
Leah Walden spoke of her childcare experience on the daycare’s website and said she liked to care for ‘babies who love me as much as I love them’. She was jailed for life, suspended, except for 70 years. Under the plea agreement and sentencing, she will be eligible for parole in 35 years.
Stanley Bradford, head of Baltimore’s homicide unit called the killing ‘just evil’ in a statement on Tuesday.
He said the family had been forced to sell their house, leave their jobs and move away from Baltimore after the murder. It has left them ‘devastated’.
An obituary written by Reece’s parents, posted shortly after her death read: ‘Dearest baby, please know that our greatest blessing was having you.’
‘This beautiful, happy, loving child entered the world on September 4, 2016, being the first girl born into the Bowman family in 47 years.
‘She had recently began chattering, clapping and crawling. She lit up and laughed every time her brother, Sawyer, was nearby. Taken way too soon from all those who love her, her spirit and memory will remain in our hearts eternally.’
‘just evil’: Baltimore PD homicide chief, Stanley Bradford, [photo], in a statement on Tuesday said, ‘To me, and all of us who are parents, when we look at something like that, there’s no explanation to give’.
The city’s Criminal Investigations Chief Stanley Bradford told the Baltimore Sun how Walden was seen ‘violently snatching the child out of the crib with one arm, swinging at the baby as if she was slapping her, and placing pillows over the baby’s face.’
He added: ‘Watching that video is disturbing. Reese Bowman, in my opinion, was tortured.’
Rocket Tiers was shut down after Reece’s death and a crowdfunding campaign to pay for the Bowman’s funeral costs raised over $50,000.
In a statement at the time of the incident last year, Baltimore Police said it appeared the baby was awake at the time of the assault.
Stanley Bradford, head of Baltimore’s homicide unit, said: ‘To me, and all of us who are parents, when we look at something like that, there’s no explanation to give.
‘It’s just evil. I mean what motive is there to treat a baby that way?
‘From what I saw, why would you treat an 8-month-old baby, or any child for that matter, in that manner?’Bradford added: ‘Watching that video is disturbing. Reece Bowman, in my opinion, was tortured.’