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Mother charged in death of 1-month-old after allegedly placing infant in oven in Midtown Kansas City

4100 block Forest Avenue
Posted at 1:35 PM, Feb 10, 2024

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — A mother has been charged for allegedly placing a 1-month-old baby in an oven, leading to the child's death.

The woman told family members she accidentally placed the infant in the oven rather than her crib, according to court documents.

Mariah Thomas is charged with endangering the welfare of a child in the first degree, leading to the death of a child, a class A felony.

"We appreciate all first responders who worked this scene and the prosecutors who went to the scene in order to issue these charges," Jackson County Prosecutor Jean Peters Baker said in a written statement. "We acknowledge the gruesome nature of this tragedy and our hearts are weighted by the loss of this precious life. We trust the criminal justice system to respond appropriately to these awful circumstances."

Officers with the Kansas City, Missouri, Police Department responded to a home in the 4100 block of Forest Avenue on a report of an infant not breathing.

Police and EMS located an individual holding the 1-month-old baby, who was unresponsive and had burn wounds on her body. The infant was declared deceased at the scene.

The grandfather of the infant told KCPD detectives that he received a call from Thomas around 1 p.m. Friday, who told him that "something was wrong with the baby and that he needed to return home immediately," according to court documents.

Once he returned home, the grandfather reported smelling smoke inside the residence and allegedly found the infant deceased inside of her crib.

He told detectives that Thomas told him that she thought she put the child in her crib but "accidentally put her in the oven," per court records.

The grandmother of the infant reported that she received a similar phone call around 1 p.m. from Thomas, who yelled "hysterically" on the phone.

Thomas and the infant lived with her parents at the residence.

Thomas was taken into custody and reportedly consented for detectives to access her phone data and obtain a blood draw.

Those found guilty of a class A felony are subject to a prison sentence of 10-30 years.

If you have any information about a crime, you may contact your local police department directly. But if you want or need to remain anonymous, you should contact the Greater Kansas City Crime Stoppers Tips Hotline by calling 816-474-TIPS (8477), submitting the tip online or through the free mobile app at P3Tips.com. Depending on your tip, Crime Stoppers could offer you a cash reward.

Annual homicide details and data for the Kansas City area are available through the KSHB 41 News Homicide Tracker, which was launched in 2015. Read the KSHB 41 News Mug Shot Policy.