Chester County authorities have charged a local mother with murder after she allegedly viciously shoved her 5-year-old daughter down a flight of stairs, knocking her down to a concrete landing in the basement and killing the child.
After first responders found her daughter dead on arrival, Ciara Robinson, 25, of Parkesburg, Pennsylvania, was heard by multiple EMTs and police officers loudly confessing to causing the girl’s death, according to a criminal complaint: “I wish I never pushed her down the f—–g steps … I shouldn’t have pushed her!” Robinson was heard saying tearfully, according to numerous witnesses.
Robinson is now in custody and charged with third-degree murder, and other charges for abuse leading up to the death on Oct. 31 of her daughter, 5-year-old Amatulah “Amy” McLaughlin.
“This little girl was severely abused, culminating in her death. No child should have to live like this. Our hearts are broken by the death of this innocent child,” Bucks County DA Thomas P. Hogan said in a statement. “The loss of any child is a tragedy. However, it is horrific that a parent would inflict such sustained and brutal damage to her own daughter. We must protect our children.”
The child was killed at some point on Halloween night. Robinson confessed to investigators that she had “gotten angry at the victim” and was “beating, punching and slapping the victim,” according to the criminal complaint. Robinson admitted to threatening to put the victim in the dark basement with the ‘Boogey Man,’ and scaring the victim, who then fell down the stairs,” it states.
The victim fell down the entire basement flight of stairs and landed on the concrete landing, sustaining a severe head injury. But after the fall, Robinson carried her daughter back upstairs, who then walked 10 feet in her bedroom, got into bed and went to sleep. Robinson went to check on the girl and later found her unresponsive.
Around 8:45 p.m., Robinson called a friend, who told police Robinson was panicked and said, “I knocked Amy out … I’m going to jail … She won’t wake up.” The friend urged her to call 911.
Around 9:25 p.m., 911 was called and found Amy not breathing, cool and unresponsive, police said. Though Robinson later denied pushing Amy down the stairs, she allegedly immediately confessed to police officers who responded to the scene that she had pushed Amy down the stairs, a nine-foot fall.
During the investigation, police also found short brown metal rods around the apartment, some of which were dented and matched wounds on Amy’s body. The medical examiner said this was “indicative of chronic abuse,” and found the cause of death was a massive head trauma causing severe brain injury.
Police also learned that Robinson had been accused of abusing her daughter by an anonymous witness who filed a report one year prior, in November 2017. Robinson admitted to that incident while being investigated over her daughter’s death. It was unclear if any action was ever taken in connection with that report.
“We will use all of our resources to continue this investigation and discover every piece of evidence,” Parkesburg police chief Sheller said in a statement. “The Parkesburg community mourns the death of this child.”
Robinson’s 2-year-old son was also living in the home but is reportedly unharmed and is now in the custody of child services.