Mia Depaillat

21-month-old girl, adopted from China at 9 months by french-born Christophe and Jill Ellen Depaillat, died of fatal injuries. Jill Ellen Depaillat was indicted on charges of malice murder, felony murder and aggravated battery. Jill said she dropped Mia and the toddler fell down the stairs.  Mia had injuries consistent with shaken baby, as well as damage to her intestines. A mistrial was declared in her case due to a hung jury, so guilt was never decided.

Mia was small (21 lbs) and developmentally delayed at her death. Depaillat had 2 school age sons and a 16 month old son who would have been 4 months old when Mia was adopted.
Date: 2004-04-16
Placement type: Adoption
Type of abuse: Lethal physical abuse
Abuser: Adoptive mother
Disabilities: yes


Cumming, Georgia
United States
See map: Google Maps
DocumentDatesort icon
Child Maltreatment, Child Abuse Fatalities Among Internationally Adopted Children2007-11-01
Judge wants decision in child death case First trial ended in mistrial2006-09-10
Judge declares murder mistrial 11 of 12 jurors vote to acquit mother in death of infant2006-06-29
Judge declares mistrial in toddler death2006-06-29
Mother's fate in jury's hands Deliberation begins in case of woman charged with daughter's death2006-06-28
Murder defendant takes witness stand Woman denies shaking 21-month-old daughter to death2006-06-25
Photos of re-creation displayed as evidence Doctor says injuries not consistent with fall down stairs2006-06-23
Testimony heard in child's death trial; Accused of abusing 2-year-old, mother faces murder charge2006-06-22
Mom on trial in child's death; Shaken child case to hinge on investigation's medical evidence2006-06-21
Woman Indicted In Baby Death2004-10-19

name change

Jill Ellen Depaillat divorced and changed her name to her maiden name of Jill Ellen Davenport.

next victim

Manipulation of the law makes more victims.

new name

possibly another name change


Jill Depaillat/Davenport/Shadel

Thank you

Thank you for sharing what you know with us at PPL

Jill Depaillat Davenport

How do you know she might have name change to Shadel? My ex husband is John Shadel and he became engaged to a woman named Jill Davenport in May 2010. I traced her name from classmates and their high school year, Facebook, the father's name of dead girl and Pound Pup Legacy website. I have 3 children that she has access to while he is at work.

Help me!


I think it is very important to verify facts.
1) a mistrial does not mean INNOCENT
2) expert witnesses were PAID for by the ACCUSSED to testify in her defense
(Expert witnesses are not cheap and do their jobs well to secure their future income.)
3) a high profile attorney was hired to defend her from Atlanta
(Great publicity for an attorney. This is free advertising for them. Source of their future income.)
4) I would ask all expert witnesses and attornies if they would allow their children and grandchildren to be taken care of by the person they are defending?
5) check out the background of the accussed
6) Does the accussed have a job or source of income other then the "opportunities" provided by hubands?
6) Did a handicap adopted child no longer appear to be a social status, but only to become a burden?

A mistrial also does not

A mistrial also does not mean guilty. Look at how many innocent people are serving prison terms because our justice system never presents all the facts. I am a little confused as to why you have written all that you have. Is there so kind of jealousy going on here. What difference does it make if she has a job or not. It sounds like you just wanted her to be guilty for some reason. The sad fact is that a child's life was lost and the mother will have to live with that in her own prison for the rest of her life. Let's just hope nothing ever happens in your life where you have to be subjected to the justice system.

This website as well as the accusations here are unjustified

Have we forgotten that a person is innocent until PROVEN guilty? This website appears to be taking a story and making this person look guilty by accusations. Yes, experts do receive a salary for their work, but so do district attorney's who look for any reason to take a case to trial because they get paid to do so! These earlier comments have been made by women who seem to have a connection of some kind based on dislike for the accused. It is shameful that they are trying to determine another outcome for a case that has already been tried and lost. Case closed.


This website clearly states: "A mistrial was declared in her case due to a hung jury, so guilt was never decided.", which is factually correct. For the rest we archive document news paper articles and (if available) court documents to the cases we present, nothing more, nothing less.

We make no accusations about someone's guilt unless proven guilty, please don't confuse us with a strawman. 

Not lost nor closed, but undetermined!

Mistrial does not mean innocent or guility. IT MEANS UNDECIDED! If I choose to side with the prosecutor and the State of Georgia then that is my option as a citizen. If you choose to side with the accussed then that is your option as a citizen.

Is it possible to re-open

Is it possible to re-open the case?

No, this website is necessary for documentation...

...of what are already public reports in mainstream media.

That's so people in denial that these stories even exist have no excuse to remain in denial.

No wonder so many resent this site. It negates the denial mechanism/conventional wisdom that helps the lazy sit on their laurels and do nothing to change a very heinous state of affairs.

"A mistrial also does not"

Exactly, these people are presuming this woman is guilty, when they probably have no idea of the case or the facts nor even know any of the parties involved.

mozartcat89 response

I know her and was at the trial. A human being can paint a pretty picture of their world on the oustside, but behind closed doors it can be completely different. In this case your response is not correct. The prosecution did not dig deep enough. They should have looked at pictures posted via internet and than looked at the picture she tried to portray in court. It was completely two different people. It made me laugh. This person will only leave victims behind.

A significant observation

I believe, when it comes to each case featured in our archives, a simple truth needs to be recognized and acknowledged:

A human being can paint a pretty picture of their world on the oustside, but behind closed doors it can be completely different.

Tragically, in some adoptive homes, it is the adoptee who experiences the worst in another person, and because of this, no one believes what it is the adopted child sees or experiences.  This is especially true if the child is pre-verbal, or given a "special" label, which now may include "attachment disorder" or "RAD".

So while I can appreciate friends and loved-ones wanting to see the best in those they love, I also believe such support systems may have a very incomplete picture of what their loved one is like, especially as a parent to an adopted child. 

In addition, I think it's interesting to note, in many of our featured abuse cases, only the adopted child was abused.  I believe this single-out pattern says something:  it points to a very scary reality, especially if we consider the role of adoption agencies and the type of victim we're looking at.  The victims in these cases are very very young and often times, they are being punished abused to death by a person who is not fully known by family/friends and is unable to demonstrate much needed self-control when parenting an adopted child.  This is where I hold adoption agencies partially responsible and accountable, since many times the home-study is not as rigorous as it needs to be (many PAPs with abusive histories and/or underlying psych conditions are being approve to adopt and parent a child with many complex emotional needs) and many adoption agencies do not provide the type of parent education classes paying and approved PAPs really need.  If stronger measures at prevention and education were taken at the agency level, perhaps fewer adoptees would meet the horrific fates found within our pages.

That being my POV, I think when we look at a case of shaken baby syndrome, (like Mia's), we have to ask is it possible the mother got so angry and frustrated at the child, she did the unthinkable, by accident?  Such things do happen, even in adoptive homes.... and it's NOT fair to put blame on the child, like so many supporting APs like to do.  Such uncontrolled violent action indicates there is something wrong with the parent.  Case closed.

He would be crazy to marry

He would be crazy to marry someone that is capable of this. Hopefully he did his research and did not subject his children to her instabilities.


I still don't understand how someone could be set free when it is clearly stated that: Photos of re-creation displayed as evidence Doctor says injuries not consistent with fall down stairs I'm sorry but if the injuries are not consistent with a fall down the stairs and earlier evidence shows that they are signs of shaken baby....then how could there be any other reason of doubt?? That baby did not have a chance and would never be able to speak the truth but when evidence is clear, how can our system allow a person like this to run free? Does this person running free after their horrible act deserve to enjoy life to the fullest?

I totally agree.

It is another case of manipulation of law. Expert witnesses were hired. Facts were definitely manipulated. Items were lost in the case or never presented. It was only not retried because of the cost to the taxpayers. This is sad because the cost to the taxpayers was more important than the cost of this little girl's life.

I can only hope that she

I can only hope that she does not harm more children or people for that matter.

The more I read about the

The more I read about the case, it looks like she did not want the responsibility any longer. I wish she could have spared an innocent child and put her up for adoption instead. If their financials were an issue as they were listed in the court documents, I don't understand how she was adopted in the first place.


There were a lot of facts that were not even presented in the case and omitted. History will repeat itself. In this situation the person's past should have been further investigated and the prosecution failed to do this. Again, money, the root of all evil, controls the outcome of this particular case. It costs the taxpayers of Georgia too much money to re trial and convict this woman and this particular little girl's life will never be laid to rest. People who have been accussed of these crimes are good actors or actresses and they move from one victim to the next leaving a trail of mass destruction. They only think of themselves and use others to achieve all of their desires.


A psychological evaluation will not prove anything when I person is good at acting. The court system needs to find people who were involved in the accused's past as well as people who are involved now and compare. The system will find lies and inconsistent areas. Look at Facebook records and pictures. The court system needs to find people who were involved in the accused's past that can prove certain items of neglect and an unreputable past.

Custody...but how to find them

How does one do that when blocked from Facebook profile and no knowledge of individuals from the accused's former life in Georgia? The court system is of no use but perhaps a private investigator??? I believe a deal, between the two parents of poor dead Mia, was made to ensure permanent residency and obtainment of citizenship for one of the parents. Why else would husband accept Jill Depaillat's blatant adultery literally up until her divorce in Georgia was finalized in early May 2011 and her marriage to her 3rd husband 4 days later.


It would be in a person's best interest to use an attorney to subponea court records of previous marriages and divorces and use those records to track those involved. Facebook can also be court ordered to share previous account records. I feel a lot of people would be hesitant to even get involved. Some people just have no morals and use everyone around them to achieve their desires, but they become patterened and will destroy their current life as well. Again, just a path of destruction and a whole lot of fooled people who think this person is great. Maybe just great at adultery and ending an innocent child's life because they ended up being learning and functionally slow. I ask the question why did she not harm the child she personally conceived by her second husband why was it just a poor little girl who ended up not being a social status symbol and only a burden? How did she treat her two children of her first marriage? Did she provide for them financially with her own sweat equity or did she rely on others, men, to do that for her? Did she pack their cloths when they traveled to visit their father in another state and better yet did she even ride along? Did she take into consideration when she met her second husband at an airport while still married to her first and then moved them States away that those children would hardly ever get to see their father? No, she was only interested in the opportunity that the new husband could provide and now she thinks she is living a fairy tale life because of the opportunities that the third husband can provide.

Records.......obtained already

Question for all is why did second husband stay married 7 more years knowing what he did about his wife, what she did to Mia, and leave his child alone with her? Why continue marriage when last two years she committed adultery and lived with another man out of state but back to GA to see son and lived with husband? What was so critical that he would accept that and expose his only child to her immoral acts? Why wait to file for divorce as he did so that it wasn't final until May 2011, exactly one year after she announced her engagement to 3rd husband and their planned wedding date. Court records show marriage to 3rd husband was exactly 4 days after her divorce was final. What is she capable of doing to her stepchildren who stand in her way of obtaining all the financial gain she thinks she can suck out of new husband?

Public Information Records

Forsyth County Newspaper Archives

The innocent life stolen

The innocent life stolen through abuse will never be forgotten. It is really sad that she has a happy life and Mia was never given a chance.


Pound Pup Legacy