Metro-East News

Task force evaluates evidence in Alorton infant girl’s death

The Metro-East Child Death Task Force is still investigating the death of 6-month-old Mariah McCorkle, whose mother found her dead Sunday morning.

The Child Death Task Force, which consists of five investigators, was activated Monday to assist the Alorton Police Department in its investigation. Captain Mike Dixon, from the Madison County Sheriff’s Department is heading up the task force.

“We’ve conducted several interviews with the people who were involved and we are working with the state’s attorney’s office,” Dixon said. “We are waiting on the evaluation of evidence that was collected to determine whether the death is criminal, natural of accidental. That could take several weeks,” he said.

Mariah had been sleeping on a short couch with her mother, Kimberly Jenkins, who woke up and saw her daughter was not breathing. The family rushed the baby to Touchette Regional Hospital in Centreville where she was pronounced dead.

An emotional Jenkins confirmed that four years ago she lost another child in a similar fashion. Mariah’s father, Mario McCorkle said he was trying to stay strong for his family, but that the situation was very overwhelming. He said it would really hit him when he attended his daughter’s funeral. He said he was already dealing with the stress of having no electricity in his home, which caused him to seek temporary shelter elsewhere.

Family members said recently that funeral arrangements for the baby were not complete.

Dixon said some of the evidence in the case must be evaluated forensically. “As that information is identified and evaluated, it will be relayed to the state’s attorney and the coroner to determine if the evidence is criminal in nature,” he said.