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Mother, boyfriend charged in girl's death

The woman's 2-year-old daughter, who was in the man's care, died of head trauma in August.

December 29, 2007|Molly Hennessy-Fiske | Times Staff Writer

A Navy wife and her boyfriend were in police custody Friday after being charged in connection with the August death of the woman's 2-year-old daughter.

Riverside police arrested Kaori Wearing, 33, Friday in San Diego for alleged child endangerment and being an accessory to a crime, said Steven Frasher, a spokesman for the Riverside Police Department.

Wearing's boyfriend, Chad Harris, 25, was arrested with the help of a SWAT team late Thursday at his mother's home in Moreno Valley in connection with the death of toddler Affinity Wearing, Frasher said.

Riverside police had been investigating the case since August and turned it over to prosecutors Dec. 19. Prosecutors issued warrants for the pair's arrest the same day, said Ingrid Wyatt, a spokeswoman for the district attorney's office.

Riverside police began investigating after Wearing called 911 on Aug. 13 to report that her daughter had stopped breathing about 9 p.m. The girl was taken to Riverside Community Hospital, Frasher said, where she was pronounced dead. Detectives noticed bruises on Affinity's face, arms and feet, he said, and an autopsy showed she died from "acute head trauma."

Wearing told investigators that she had left her two daughters, ages 2 and 3, with Harris at his apartment in the 1200 block of Blaine Street in Riverside while she had her breasts augmented in Huntington Beach, Frasher said.

She told husband Alexander Wearing, an active duty sailor, that she and the girls were staying with a female friend who had agreed to baby-sit while she had the surgery, Frasher said.

Harris' 6-year-old niece and 3-year-old nephew were also at the apartment that day, Frasher said.

Wearing told police that she returned to find Affinity asleep on Harris' bed, snoring and running a fever about 8 p.m., and that the girl was unresponsive by 9 p.m., Frasher said.

Riverside police detectives and forensic investigators searched Harris' apartment and discovered an indentation in a bedroom wall that matched the size and shape of Affinity's head, Frasher said.

The other children left with Harris were unharmed, Frasher said.

Alexander Wearing, a petty officer stationed in San Diego, has filed for divorce and has custody of their 3-year-old daughter, Frasher said.

On Friday, Harris was being held at Robert Presley Detention Center in Riverside, while Wearing was being transferred from San Diego to the Southwest Detention Center near Temecula, Frasher said.



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