Tennessee woman indicted in death of adopted child from China.

Date: 2005-12-13

The America's Intelligence Wire

A U.S. woman has been arrested in the death of her 20-month-old daughter adopted from China.

Jennifer Alvey, 34, was indicted by a jury on charges of first-degree murder, aggravated child abuse, aggravated child neglect and reckless homicide in the death of Emma Alvey.

She surrendered to authorities Tuesday and was to be taken to the Williamson County, Tennessee, jail, according to Spring Hill police.

On Oct. 19, "The mother held the baby and shook the baby back and forth, striking the baby's head on a coffee table in their living room," Spring Hill Police Detective Sgt. Steve Cretin said.

"There are no indications that the father was involved in any way, or had any idea that this would happen. And we've had no prior reports of any abuse at this home." There are no other children in the household.

Directly after the incident, police said Alvey took her daughter to the home of neighbors, Charlie and Nan Fink, who called police. The child suffered a skull fracture and was taken to a hospital, where she died Oct. 24.

An autopsy by the medical examiner's office is not yet complete.

Following Emma's death, condolences were sent from around the world to the Web site of Bethany Christian Services, through which the couple adopted the child and posted a detailed description of the process that ended eight months ago when they returned to the United States with Emma.

Tammy Delle, director of the Nashville, Tennessee, office of Bethany Christian Services, cited privacy policies in saying she could not confirm that Alvey and her husband, Phillip, had adopted through the Nashville office.

The Bethany Christian Services Web site displays pictures and profiles of families wishing to adopt or who have successfully adopted through the agency. No picture of the child was displayed on the site Tuesday.

Delle said families wishing to adopt go through extensive screening processes that include background checks through local authorities, the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation and the FBI. Families' health and financial histories are also checked.


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