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BCSO: Mom Was Grilling & Left Toddler Unwatched Before Drowning

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Alisha Stevens was grilling outside a Burke County home on Monday afternoon when her 1-year-old daughter fell into a water-filled hole and went unnoticed, authorities said this week.

Stevens, 34, of Sylvania, Georgia, has been charged with murder in the second degree in the death of Adlyn Stevens.

The death has shocked the community and led the suspect’s sister to warn people against rushing to judgment. In a Facebook post, Rachel Heinemeyer Lesesne said the family lost a precious baby that was a joy to everyone she met.

“This was an accident that could have happened to anyone,” Lesesne said. “My sister loves all of her children and would never set out to hurt any of them. Judgment aside from anyone, a baby that meant so much to our family is gone and there’s so much more to the picture than what the internet leads you to believe. There are four other children that lost their baby sister and waiting for the results of this investigation without their mother.”

Authorities say the girl was unsupervised while running around the property Monday afternoon at 648 Winter Road in Burke County.

“Alisha Stevens later found Adyln Stevens in a 3-foot deep hole filled with water lying face up unresponsive,” an arrest warrant says.

The girl was rushed to Burke County Medical Center by ambulance, where she was pronounced dead. Alisha Stevens was booked into the Burke County Detention Center the same day, said sheriff’s Col. Jimmy Wylds. A booking sheet says she was employed by Aecon-Wachs, a leading provider of industrial and power generation solutions based out of Jackson, S.C.

The tragic death came just four months after the toddler was injured in an accident on her way to a pediatric appointment. According to a GoFundMe page, Alisha Stevens was taking Adlyn and her 9-year-old daughter to the appointment Oct. 24 when a non-attentive driver who was speeding struck their car on the driver’s side.

Adlyn suffered bruising from the car seat while the 9 year old sustained a fractured cheek bone and Alisha Stevens had a broken neck.

Here is the murder warrant:

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Greg Rickabaugh
Greg Rickabaugh
Greg Rickabaugh is an award-winning crime reporter in the Augusta-Aiken area with experience writing for The Augusta Chronicle, The Augusta Press and serving as publisher of The Jail Report. Rickabaugh is a 1994 graduate of the University of South Carolina and has appeared on several crime documentaries on the Investigation Discovery channel.
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