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4 Babies Killed in Fire, Home Alone...

Posted by on Apr. 26, 2013 at 10:00 PM
  • 16 Replies

This is the saddest story. Those poor babies:(

HARTSVILLE, SC (WMBF) - The mother of four children who died in a mobile home fire in Hartsville has been charged with four counts of unlawful neglect of a child and four counts of homicide by child abuse.

  • A Tragedy in Hartsville

  • Those charges against Hope Hawkins were upgraded and released in a news conference Friday morning. She was arrested Thursday night and booked into the Darlington County Detention Center, said Capt. Andy Locklair with the DCSO.

    During that news conference, Fire Chief Jeff Burr revealed that the investigation so far has determined that fire began in the kitchen, and has been deemed accidental though they are not sure of the exact cause.

    Sheriff Wayne Byrd spoke next, saying Hope Hawkins has given conflicting answers to their question regarding her location before the fire and when it started, but it is obvious she was not home. The children were in the home alone and unprotected, the sheriff said.

    At Hawkins' bond hearing on Friday, a judge set bond on the unlawful neglect charges at $20,000. Bond was not set on the homicide by child abuse charges, which carry a sentence of at least 20 years in prison each. It will not be set until Hawkins stands before a circuit court judge, Monique Blair reported from the courtroom.

    During the hearing, authorities revealed Hawkins has no prior criminal record. Her public defender did ask that Hawkins be given a personal recognizance bond so she could be released from prison to attend funeral services.

    The fire that claimed four young lives

    The bodies of four young children were found after a fire in a Hartsville home, and the family dealing with that loss is being aided by the American Red Cross.

    Capt. Locklair said the four children found dead were siblings.

    The family identified the children as four-year-old Delonta Dixon, two-year-old Camaron Mason, and twin 10-month-old girls My'asia and Ky'nasia Hawkins.

    "They were beautiful. Two boys, two girls. When they come around, they just light up everything," Janice Hawkins, the children's aunt said.

    Hawkins expressed tremendous grief as she described the children.

    "They were just some happy kids. Colorful personality. They a joy to be around. They just have a beautiful heart. They were just so loving and caring and the whole neighborhood know them and they're loved by all," Hawkins said through tears.

    "It's just like a world was taken. I feel like a shell of a person because of this tragedy and anybody that loses kids, can understand," Hawkins said.

    Captain Locklair said the four children lived in the mobile home, located on Depot Street in Hartsville, that was ravaged by fire Wednesday afternoon. The mother of the children was in the front yard when firefighters arrived.

    The autopsies scheduled for Thursday in Newberry showed all four children died of smoke inhalation. Mayor Pennington, who is also a volunteer firefighter and was on scene, confirmed to WMBF News that the siblings were found huddling together in a closet inside the home.

    "The one thing they teach firefighters is that kids hide in a fire," Mayor Pennington said.  "They train you to search under beds and in closets and as it turns out they were in a closet all huddled together and hugging each other."

    The Hartsville City Fire Department received a 911 call around 1:53 p.m. Wednesday, and firefighters were on the scene by 1:57 p.m., according to officials with the department. The home was 75 percent involved when crews arrived, and the fire was under control in about 10 minutes.

    Seven firemen, a fire officer, two engines, and one rescue truck responded. Hartsville's Mayor Mel Pennington, a volunteer fireman, was also at the scene to assist.

    Copyright 2013 WMBF News. All rights reserved.

    by on Apr. 26, 2013 at 10:00 PM
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    Replies (1-10):
    by Whoopie on Apr. 26, 2013 at 10:05 PM

    Good Lord.

    by Bronze Member on Apr. 26, 2013 at 10:07 PM
    1 mom liked this

     cryingThis breaks my heart. The 4 year old was probably trying in the only way they knew to protect their little brother and sisters. How awful for the family and friends of the family.

    by on Apr. 26, 2013 at 10:08 PM
    My goodness...
    Posted on CafeMom Mobile
    by Angie on Apr. 26, 2013 at 10:15 PM

    I heard today the mom was charged.  It's a pity these childrens  last moments alive were spent  alone and terrified.  What to do with the mother now?  Twenty-one years old with four dead children due to her immaturity, and perhaps neglect.  How is the justice system supposed to handle this case?  Some moms will say she is too young to go to jail for a lengthy period because of her age, immaturity and inexperience.  On the other hand, the children should have been her top priority in life since she took on the responsibility after having child after child. 

    by on Apr. 27, 2013 at 10:14 AM

    Women with this type of mentality should not be allowed to have children.. When all of mine were babies the farthest I'd be away from them (at nap time) was to sit on the front porch directly below their bedroom with the windows open. I'm sure God will forgive her....maybe...but I sure couldn't. What a waste of beautiful young lives.

    by Ruby Member on Apr. 27, 2013 at 10:29 AM
    Why do people think it's ok to leave kids alone in the home. I realize people all think of home as a safe place but it's not a safe place for UNsupervised children. When boy kid was little, I had to walk him to the end of our private road to catch the school bus. It usually took just a few minutes to get him there, put him on the bus and get back into the house. I wrapped up baby girl even if she was asleep and took her with me. I just don't understand why people continue to leave little ones unsupervised and these tragedies keep happening.
    by Bazinga! on Apr. 27, 2013 at 10:32 AM

     I don't think I can read this. :(

    by Silver Member on Apr. 27, 2013 at 11:12 AM

    Seriously I hope this "mother" gets the harshest sentance. Those poor babies my heart breaks at the thought of them alone terrified in that closet with the woman that is supposed to to love and protect them off who knows where.

    by Silver Member on Apr. 27, 2013 at 11:17 AM

    the siblings were found huddling together in a closet inside the home.


    AWWWEEE those poor babies! This is awful.

    by Ruby Member on Apr. 27, 2013 at 11:19 AM
    I can't read it. I pray for the firefighters who had to find those babies. This breaks my heart.
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