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Cause of 7-Year-Old’s Death Identified, 2 Children’s Center Employees Fired

Ja’Ceon Terry died on July 17 at a center for children with emotional or mental health needs

According to a spokesman for the Louisville Metro Police, the investigation continues into Ja’Ceon Terry’s July 17 death. No one has been charged with a crime stemming from Ja’Ceon’s death.

The Jefferson County Coroner’s Office released the boy’s cause of death last week.

At the time he died, Ja’Ceon was under the care of workers at Brooklawn, a children’s treatment center in Louisville.

Two employees at the center for children with emotional or mental health needs have been fired in the aftermath of Ja’Ceon’s death.

Positional or postural asphyxiation occurs when someone’s position prevents them from breathing. Usually, it happens when the nose and mouth or blocked, or the chest is unable to expand enough to take in adequate breaths.

The police spokesman tells TD the department “received the information from the coroner’s office.” and that “this case is still an ongoing investigation.”

He added: “Once we have gathered all of the facts related to this death, we will present them to the Commonwealth Attorney’s Office to determine how we will proceed.”

According to the Courier-Journal, Seven Counties Services, which operates Brooklawn, confirmed the firings, saying the agency was “completely devastated by the unspeakable loss of a child in our care.”

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The statement adds that Ja’Ceon “should not have died on our watch. As protectors of Kentucky’s most vulnerable children, we are dedicated to making sure it never happens again.”

A statement was also provided to the paper by Susan Dunlap, a spokeswoman for the state’s Cabinet for Heath and Family Services, which assigns children within the foster care system to facilities like Brooklawn.

The cabinet statement said that it “mourns the passing of any child or any person of any age in its care.”

“This sadness was deepened more upon learning the results of the autopsy, identifying asphyxiation as cause of death,” it concluded, adding the cabinet has suspended placing children at Brooklawn for the time being.


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