Mother arrested for toddler’s death

Mother arrested for toddler's death
De'Laijah Smith (Source: Facebook)
De'Laijah Smith (Source: Facebook)

BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - Police have arrested a 21-year-old woman in connection to the death of her 2-year-old daughter.

The Baton Rouge Police Department arrested Candice Shanee Smith on Tuesday, Dec. 30 and charged her with second-degree cruelty to juveniles. She allegedly admitted to "forcefully pushing" her daughter, Da'Laijah Smith, causing her death.

The investigation began around 9:15 p.m. on Monday when EMS was called to a home on Beachwood Drive. When they arrived, they found Da'Laijah unresponsive.

The child was rushed to the hospital where she later died as a result of traumatic injuries.

When questioned by police, Smith allegedly admitted to pushing the child, causing her to fall and strike her head against a shower wall.

"Smith also admitted to other multiple acts of physical abuse," said Cpl. Don Coppola. "Investigators observed Da'Laijah to have multiple signs of bruising and fingernail marks to her extremities."

The East Baton Rouge Parish Coroner has scheduled an autopsy for Wednesday. Officials say the charges against Smith could be upgraded pending the results of that autopsy.

Smith is currently being held in the East Baton Rouge Parish Prison. Bond has not yet been set.

Copyright 2014 WAFB. All rights reserved.