The Cleveland teenager who said he witnessed his 5-year-old sister’s alleged beating death told News 5 he performed CPR on her lifeless body in an effort to save her.
“I really wanted her to wake up,” Rayvon Owens, 15, said through tears.
On Tuesday, his mother, Ursula Owens, 36, and Tequila Crump, 27, were both charged with felonious assault in connection with the death of 5-year-old Ta’naejah McCloud.
According to court documents, the women "did inflict serious physical harm to a five-year-old child that resulted in seizure, brain injury and subsequently death."
It happened on March 17 at their home on 10700 block of Bryant Avenue in Cleveland.
Ta'naejah McCloud was pronounced dead at University Hospitals Cleveland Medical Center on Tuesday. An autopsy is scheduled for Wednesday.
Rayvon, who goes by Ray Ray, told News 5 he watched his mother and Ta’neajah’s mother — who is Crump — take turns standing over the girl and repeatedly hitting her in the head.
Ray Ray said he tried to perform CPR and asked his mother to call 911 repeatedly, but he was told no.
It wasn’t the first time that the teen spoke up about the abuse. He told his legal guardian, Sierra Giles, that the girl was being beaten in October 2016.
The Cuyahoga County Department of Child and Family Services confirmed that two calls were received at that time. The case was investigated but the “allegations were not substantiated.”
A separated case was opened in February regarding allegations that something was not right in the home. Based on the assessment, social workers kept the case open.
Social workers visited the home 8 times in five weeks since the case was opened, according to records. The visits took place at the home, at a case appointment or at a medical appointment. A case plan was then developed because of allegations of neglect and abuse.
Giles told News 5 she’s outraged that more was not done to remove the girl from the home when the allegations of abuse surfaced.
“It makes you sick on your stomach because it’s like all of this could have been prevented,” Giles said.
A vigil is scheduled for Thursday, March 23 at 6pm in front of the home where the incident happened. The address is 10722 Bryant Avenue in Cleveland.