Trenique Faciane, who was arrested in late May in the beating death of her 22-month-old foster child, was indicted on a charge of second-degree murder Tuesday by a St. Tammany Parish grand jury.
Faciane, 41, originally was booked on second-degree cruelty to a juvenile after she told St. Tammany Sheriff’s Office detectives that she beat Madison Parrott with a hairbrush, then shook her and dropped her into a bathtub.
She was rebooked on first-degree murder after the girl died May 22 of blunt force trauma with bleeding in the brain. That charge meant Faciane was not entitled to bail, and she has been held in the parish jail since then. She will be arraigned Sept. 21.
Under Louisiana law, a first-degree murder charge — punishable by death or life in prison — can be brought if a victim is younger than 12. Second-degree murder is not a capital crime; the punishment for it is life in prison without parole.
Attorney Buddy Spell filed a motion Monday to be entered as counsel of record for Faciane, who had been represented by the Capital Defense Project of Southeast Louisiana and Dwight Doskey. Because she no longer faces capital charges, they can no longer represent her, the motion says.
Spell also filed a motion to set bail, arguing that Faciane is now eligible for bail. The defendant has no criminal record and is “not a danger to any other person and is not a flight risk,’’ the motion says.
Faciane is part owner of Wee Wisdom Learning Center, a child care facility in Slidell. The Sheriff’s Office said at the time of her arrest that she was not involved in day-to-day operations at the center.
Travis and Mindy Parrott, the girl’s parents, are suing the state Department of Children and Family Services, three DCFS employees, the day care center and Faciane in Madison’s death. The suit, filed in late August in 19th Judicial District Court in Baton Rouge, alleges that the child was “repeatedly physically abused’’ by Faciane and that the DCFS case manager and her supervisors “repeatedly ignored physical signs and reports of abuse.’’
The child’s mother said she had reported her suspicions of abuse to the DCFS for at least a month before the girl’s death.
Follow Sara Pagones on Twitter, @spagonesadvocat.