Tenn. woman faces death penalty in child’s death

Tenn. woman faces death penalty in child's death (Image 1)

CLINTON, Tenn. (AP) – A state prosecutor is seeking the death penalty against an Oak Ridge woman accused of suffocating her 2-year-old granddaughter.

Anderson County District Attorney General Dave Clark filed the notice to seek the death penalty on Wednesday in the first-degree murder case against 48-year-old Valerie Stenson.

Clark told The Knoxville News Sentinel that it's been decades since a death penalty case occurred in Anderson County.

Stenson is accused in the suffocation death of Manhattan Inman, who was found on April 17, 2011, in her crib with a “tightly tied scarf around her lower face, covering her mouth,” according to an autopsy report.

The report stated the child's body had injuries consistent with sexual abuse and the infant was malnourished and only weighed 23 pounds when she died.

Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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