WILKINSBURG, PENNSYLVANIA — A father who shook his baby daughter has been arrested and charged with murder after she passed away 14 years later.
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reports that on May 22, 2005, Ariden Jackson—who was 23 at the time—admitted to police that he violently shook his four-week-old baby girl, Janiya Jackson, three times because she wouldn’t stop crying.
Janiya has since suffered from a seizure disorder and developmental delays.
In 2007, Ariden pled guilty to aggravated assault, endangering the welfare of children, and recklessly endangering another person. He was sentenced to 10 years in prison.
Ariden was released in September 2016.
Shaken Baby Dies 14 Years Later
According to WPXI, Janiya began living with a family friend, Leshaun Byrd, after her mother was unable to find a stable place to live.
Byrd said, “She’s been with me for the past five years. I just couldn’t see her going into care. Being that I knew the child and had a relationship with the child, I just decided to take her in.”
“She talked very little, but she would tell you if she was happy or sad by her smile,” Byrd added. “She couldn’t tell you she was having a bad day, she would just act out. Most of the time, she was a great child.”
However, tragedy struck while he was away visiting family. He received a call from his girlfriend, Annie Howard, who stated that Janiya wasn’t waking up and she wasn’t breathing.
As Howard was on the phone with 911, she and a neighbor tried to resuscitate her to no avail.
Janiya was pronounced dead shortly after being transported to an area hospital by emergency medical services.
Autopsy Confirms Child Died By Homicide
A local medical examiner conducted an autopsy on Janiya to determine the cause of death. It was revealed that she died from complications due to seizures resulting from head trauma, and her death was ruled a homicide.
Ariden, now 37, has not been brought to justice, but Wilkinsburg police are searching for him.
If you have information regarding his whereabouts, police ask that you call 911.
— MEGHAN SCHILLER (@MeghanKDKA) April 17, 2019