Local News

Autopsy: Toddler died of dehydration

Posted May 14, 2010

— A 17-month-old Wake Forest boy died in March of dehydration, according to an autopsy report released Friday.

Marcus Isaiah Willis was found dead in his crib on March 20. His mother told police that the child was put down for a nap at 2 p.m., and he was found unresponsive four hours later.

Officers seized the crib mattress and mattress cover as part of the investigation into the child's death, according to a search warrant.

The medical examiner determined the child had been left unattended in a heated room for seven hours, according to the autopsy report. Investigators who recreated the scenario found the temperature in the room would have been 97 degrees, the report states.

There was no immediate word from Wake Forest police regarding the status of their investigation.


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  • mad_dash May 17, 2010

    My heart hurts for the little guy. His mother ought to be punished to the fullest extent of the law.

  • tarheelbluefan May 14, 2010

    Please remember the new editors that write these stories write only what they are told. There is more to this story then mentioned above. The dad was with the child for most of the day while the mom was at work and when the child and his sibling was laid down for a nap in a door closed room that the 2 year old could not open. Yes mom is at fault as well as she didn't check on the children when she came home from work. The baby was put down for a nap at 3pm and was found sometime after 9pm. It was a hot day in March and there was a space heater in the room as well that had gotten turned on high somehow that caused the room to be hotter. There is still more to this story but I was clairfying that it's not all the mom's fault, the dad is more to blame than the mom. Yes I agree both should be charged but the dad should get more charges as he was not working and the mom was trying to support the family while he kept the kids. The other sibling was took away from the parents and is in good h

  • Bing Used May 14, 2010

    sillywabbit, you are right God didn't kill the baby, the mother did.

    It takes more than 7 hrs to die from dehydration, he also could have been malnourished or had been really, reallly sick, with vomiting and runny diapers

  • sillywabbitthepatriot May 14, 2010

    God didn't kill the baby, it died from scientific causes.

  • didisaythat May 14, 2010


    A child is dead and in my experience many of deaths that are similar is because the parents lack the ability or the desire to take care of child. My children have been able to make it for 5 years...there have been accidents and they have had to be treated for bumps and bruises and scraps...Those are accidents those are things that can be dissmissed as not being able to stop. Leaving a child for several hours without checking on or giving water to is torture and can not be explained away not matter who tries. That child depended on parents to keep him/her alive and they did not do it. The excuses are secondary and just there to make people feel sorry for her. Tired of our society too scared to make expect people to take responsibliity for their lives.

  • meta4csw May 14, 2010

    I certainly think he is in amuch better place! Sometimes, God takes those who probably don't have much of a chance. RIP Little Man. PS - Hope he doesn't have any siblings...

    So god killed the baby and the mother is off the hook.

  • rmncox1954 May 14, 2010

    Furthermore, why did the child lay there for 7 hours before she even checked on him? He had to have been dehydrated before he went to sleep, maybe from lack of nutrition?

  • shc0729 May 14, 2010

    97 degrees ???? Who is paying the electric bill? Lets leave Mom (or other so called responsible adult) in a 97degree room without food or water for a very l-o-n-g---- time.
    Bet there is a boyfriend involved somewhere in this scene.

  • GOT_FAITH May 14, 2010


  • theroadislong May 14, 2010

    97 degrees? Really?! How is that even possible?