WARNING - GRAPHIC CONTENT: A'lona (Halo) Williams' injuries were consistent with extreme sexual trauma, coroners found
A murdered three-year-old girl was abused so badly that she had almost a litre of blood in her stomach when a post-mortem was carried out.
Coroners found that A'lona (Halo) Williams' injuries were consistent with extreme sexual trauma and her death was ruled a murder and is now being investigated by police.
They dismissed her mum's claims that her injuries were caused by a car crash.
Halo's devastated grandmother, who cradled the child as she died in hospital in June 2018, says she attempted to report signs of abuse, including various injuries, multiple times but her calls to a child protection hotline were never returned.
Police in Houston, Texas, have not charged anyone in connection with the murder a year on.
Halo's grandmother, Mikisha Vaughn, told TV station KHOU-11 she had reported signs of abuse just months before the girl's death, and claims nothing was done to protect her.
Ms Vaughn said she first called Texas' Child Protective Services (CPS) in January 2018 after Halo came to her home wearing a splint over a swollen arm.
Halo's mum claimed the girl had been injured in a trampoline accident.
Ms Vaughn said she left messages on a CPS hotline but her calls were not returned.
The grandmother said she later noticed other injuries to the girl's body, including belt marks in March 2018.
Ms Vaughn claimed her daughter - Halo's mother - had told her that her boyfriend had given the girl "whoopings".
CPS began investigating in January 2018 when Halo was treated for a broken arm in hospital, KHOU-11 reported.
After the treatment Halo's mum agreed to place the girl and her two sons with her boyfriend's parents, the TV station reported.
But both had criminal records, including assault and burglary charges, which violated CPS policies.
In April 2018, Halo was taken to hospital with a lemon-sized knot in her head.
Her mum claimed she had hit her head on a slide at the park.
Two months later, Ms Vaughn said, Halo's mum called her to say the girl was in hospital.
The grief-stricken grandmother cradled Halo as she died.
She told KHOU-11: "The nurses just told me to hold her. I just told her I was sorry. I tried. I didn’t know what else to do, but I tried."
A spokesperson for CPS told the TV station that files were handed over to Houston police after Halo's death.
Ms Vaughn, who is now caring for Halo's brothers, said: "You are supposed to do something before, not after".
Lawyer Mike Craig, who represents Halo’s brothers, said Halo's death was "completely prev
Do not miss out on the latest news. Join the Eve Digital Telegram channel HERE.
The views and opinions expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Evewoman.co.ke