Two caregivers will appear in court today for their alleged involvement in the death of a 23-month-old girl in August.

Jaspera Rainey, 28, was charged Oct. 17 with a Class C felony count of first-degree endangering the welfare of a child in the death of her daughter, Jaliyah Blackmon. A co-defendant, Patrick Middlebrook, 29, also was charged Oct. 27 for his alleged involvement in the girl’s death.

On Aug. 15, emergency responders were called to Ms. Rainey’s and Mr. Middlebrook’s home at Oak Ridge Apartments, where the child was found unresponsive. Buchanan County Prosecuting Attorney Dwight Scroggins initially called the child’s death suspicious as police began a lengthy investigation into the incident.

“The child victim ... received multiple injuries to the child’s head and body that ultimately caused the child victim’s death,” according to the probable cause statements filed in October for both Ms. Rainey and Mr. Middlebrook. “The defendant had care, custody and control during the time frame of the child victim’s death, according to reports and statements.”

In addition to the criminal charge, Mr. Middlebrook has a past history of contempt of court, harassment, assault, recklessly endangering, reckless driving, drugs, probation violation, stealing and burglary. No notable criminal history was recorded for Ms. Rainey.

Since the arrests, Ms. Rainey has remained in custody in lieu of a $75,000 bond. Mr. Middlebrook has been in custody in lieu of a $50,000 bond.

Kristin Hoppa can be reached

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