CLEVELAND — Sierra Day and Deonte Lewis’ trials began Thursday with opening statements and first witnesses called to the stand. They are both charged with the brutal murder of 4-year-old Aniya Day-Garrett.
The girl's mother, Day, along with her boyfriend, Lewis, have been indicted on charges including: aggravated murder, murder, felonious assault, permitting child abuse, 3 counts of endangering children and tampering with evidence.
In early March of 2018, Aniya was found burned and unresponsive in her Euclid apartment. She was taken to Euclid Hospital where she was pronounced dead.
Police said she was emaciated and bruised and, despite being burned, the fire department said there was no fire at the residence. The girl died of blunt force trauma to the head, according to the medical examiner. Her death was ruled a homicide.
Her death has sparked protests and questions, most notably from Aniya's father, Mickhal Garrett, who warned authorities in a chilling letter to Cuyahoga County Juvenile Court about the alleged abuse his daughter experienced at the hands of her mother.
Aniya's death also prompted one of the two daycares accused of failing to report the suspected abuse of Aniya Day-Garrett to be forced to close in March 2019, according to a settlement agreement reached between Get Ready Set Grow Preschool and the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services.