Indiana woman gets 87 years for killing her 5-year-old Haitian cousin, mistreating siblings


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MUNCIE, Indiana — A Muncie woman was sentenced Wednesday to 87 years in prison in the torture slaying of her 5-year-old Haitian cousin and beatings of her own siblings with an electrical cord.

A Delaware Circuit Court judge sentenced Charlene Tabb on Wednesday for the June 2013 killing of Marie Pierre and the other attacks after prosecutor Eric Hoffman told the court Tabb behaved like a "rabid, blood-thirsty animal."

A jury in May convicted Tabb of murder and the neglect of a dependent that resulted in death in Pierre's slaying, The Star Press reported (http://tspne.ws/1mktvtK ). Tabb, 30, also was convicted of five counts of battery with a deadly weapon and three counts of neglect of a dependent for allegedly abusing her siblings when they were 11, 14 and 16 years old.

In a sentencing memo, Hoffman wrote that Tabb "not only killed Marie but she has, for all intents and purposes, ruined the lives of her younger siblings."

Tabb's attorney, Michael Quirk, didn't immediately respond to a phone message Wednesday seeking comment.

During Wednesday's proceedings, Tabb's probation officer recommended an 80-year term, while prosecutors requested a maximum sentence of 95 years.

Testimony during her trial indicated that Tabb's siblings and Pierre, who was originally from Haiti, moved from Florida to Tabb's Muncie home in July 2012. Prosecutors said that for several months the siblings lived in that house alone while Tabb and her husband, Marcus, used a system of video cameras to monitor their activities from another home about two miles away.

Tabb did not testify during the trial, but told police hours after Pierre's death that she was unaware of the many injuries authorities found on the girl's body.

A pathologist testified the child had at least 80 injuries, including cuts, bruises and burns, which were in various stages of healing when she died.

Hoffman said the only way Tabb couldn't have been aware of the Marie's condition was if Tabb "had no eyeballs, and was completely blind."

Tabb's youngest sister and younger brother face prosecution as juveniles for their roles in the abuse and death of Pierre, their cousin.

Marcus Tabb is charged with the neglect of a dependent that resulted in death and is scheduled to stand trial starting Oct. 20.


Information from: The Star Press, http://www.thestarpress.com

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