Jamerria Hall faces charges of first-degree murder, assault and reckless endangerment
A Maryland mother is facing a lifetime behind bars after confessing to killing her two children.
Baltimore police say Jamerria Hall, 28, confessed to killing 6-year-old and 8-year-old Da’Neria and Davin Thomas. As reported by PEOPLE, the children were found dead in their Southwest Baltimore apartment on Aug. 24. Hall was charged Wednesday with their murders.
“When officers arrived at the location, they discovered an unidentified deceased juvenile male and an unidentified deceased juvenile female. Both were in a state of decomposition and visible trauma to the bodies was observed,” the Baltimore Police Department said in a statement.
According to charging documents, Aug. 19 is the last time Hall was seen with the children. Her neighbors at the Coventry Manor Apartments reported hearing one of the kids scream, “Mommy, no!” on Aug. 19 and others reported hearing screaming from the 19th through the 20th, according to a WBAL report.
About five days later a maintenance man found the children after checking on a foul odor coming from the apartment. Per the Baltimore Sun, “Davin was found in a sleeping bag with a knife in his chest and a trash bag over his head. Da’Neria was found in the bathtub,” the outlet wrote.
“We can confirm now that the mother 28-year-old Jamerria Hall is the suspect, in this case, having confessed to murdering her children. She’s currently in custody and detectives will be pursuing criminal charges,” said Police Commissioner Michael Harrison.
“Our detectives worked really really hard to locate her and once she was located, she was brought in for questioning. Detectives did a phenomenal job and was able to extrapolate a confession from her, that she is responsible for the death of her two children,” said Harrison.
“This is an unfathomable gut-wrenching tragedy,” Baltimore mayor Brandon Scott said at a news conference Wednesday. “Davin and Da’Neria … should be starting school, like the rest of the kids in the city.”
In a separate incident in 2018, Hall disabled her parents’ smoke detectors inside their home before lighting family photos and mementos on fire. She then briefly disappeared with her children, but they were later found unharmed. Hall received a five-year sentence for first-degree arson and endangering the lives of her children, per The Sun.
“They gave my grandchildren back to their mother after she lit the house on fire with them inside,” Theodore Thomas, the children’s paternal grandfather told the Sun. He said he and his wife were taking care of the kids after the fire, but child welfare returned them to the mother after she filed for custody. “They took those kids. Why would they do that?”
Hall was later granted full custody of Davin and Da’Neria when their father failed to respond to court proceedings. Hall’s mother told police on Aug. 23 that her daughter told her she was hospitalized and that he was taking care of the kids.
The children’s father told police he had not seen his kids but did see Hall walking down the street without them “screaming and cursing at no one,” and believed she was “under the influence.”
Hall had a history of psychological issues which were exacerbated by the pandemic.
“In the beginning of the 2020 pandemic I found myself going back into depression,” she posted on Facebook, per the Sun report. “I was not able to work because my family needed me at home. Every month I had supervised probation office visits. I suffer from myofacial pain syndrome. PTSD always taps me on the shoulder and triggers my anxiety.”
Hall’s court-appointed lawyer said she is not capable of participating in her own defense and asked that she receive a psychiatric evaluation. The judge granted the request but said it would have to happen while she remained in jail.
“We have to and we will close any gaps that enables tragedies like this to occur. This wasn’t a drug-related, this wasn’t a violent group or this wasn’t some random thing, and while we don’t know the details of the case, we know that two children are gone,” said Mayor Scott.
Hall’s neighbors, some of them who knew the children, say they are shocked and horrified by what happened.
“It’s really troublesome to know that something has gone on like that. I mean, we don’t get this kind of drama in this neighborhood,” Elva Dorsey told WBAL. “I just hope that everything will be uncovered, and somebody will get some answers to this. You wouldn’t want to see anybody’s family go through this. No one’s family.”
Hall faces charges of first-degree murder, assault and reckless endangerment.
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