Date: 1993-01-20


January 20, 1993
Janice Haidet
Dayton Daily News

Kathleen and Timothy Carroll each pleaded guilty Tuesday to two counts of contributing to the neglect of a child in the bleach-related death of their 6-year-old adopted daughter.

Both were sentenced to a year in jail, but Greene County Juvenile Court Judge Robert A. Hagler suspended the sentence provided the couple successfully complete five years of probation. As a condition of their probation, the Carrolls need court permission before attempting to adopt or act as foster parents for any more children.

On Sept. 18, while her parents were away at the hospital with another child, Hannah, a Down syndrome child left in the care of an older sibling, got into some household bleach. No medical treatment was sought for the child for two days.

Hannah collapsed and died Sept. 21.

Originally from Massachusetts, the Carrolls have adopted 10 children, nine of whom were living in their Cedarville home at the time of Hannah's death. Most were physically or mentally handicapped.

Hagler said the photographs of the burns left by the bleach on the little girl still haunt him - but believes the Carrolls generally make good parenting decisions.

He said he believes Hannah's death resulted from "taking on more responsibility than a family can reasonably be expected to handle. . . . This family needs a time to heal."

The Carrolls were relieved after hearing Hagler's verdict in a courtroom filled with supporters.

"We understand a lot more about everything involved in Hannah's death," Timothy Carroll said.

"If we had it to do all over again, there are a lot of things we would've done completely different over that whole weekend," Kathleen Carroll said.

The Carrolls were indicted in October on charges of involuntary manslaughter, an aggravated third-degree felony carrying maximum penalties of 10 years in prison and a $5,000 fine. The charge to which they pleaded guilty is a first-degree misdemeanor.


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