Monday, February 25, 2008


This is so not what I meant to post about this morning. And I hate posting stuff like this because it affects me so much when I read it. But this one I just had to. I cannot believe some people in this world. I'm just...speechless. I hope these people are put to death. They deserve to suffer.

Peoria County Case 08 CF 200

On February 12, 2008, Peoria Police responded to a call at 3012 W. Proctor Street in Peoria. Found dead and strapped in a car seat set that had been placed in a crib was 5 month old Benjamin Sargent. The defendants are his parents.
Benjamin was wearing a blue snow suit. It was zipped up. The temperature in the room was near 80 degrees. Benjamin’s
eyes were open, his hands were clenched in a fistlike position and, although dead, his eyes were staring straight ahead.

Police investigation and medical and pathological examination would reveal that Benjamin had been strapped into
this car seat and had not left it in eight days. All waste and urine had collected beneath him and his buttocks, legs and back were eaten into by the resulting poison. Some waste left in Benjamin’s colon revealed resulted in constipation because it could not be pushed out of his body due to starvation.

James Sargent was present at the house and, when interviewed on that day, and again on February 18, his answers
to questions confirmed for police that Benjamin had been returned to the residence on February 4, 2008, by a grandmother and he was in the same car seat, wearing the same snow suit, and confined in the same manner as when he was found dead 8 days later. A person who ‘stayed’ with others in the garage of the defendants told police that he was the one who observed Benjamin in the car seat, and on the living room floor, and that it was he who found this odd and so, he placed the child (while in the car seat) in a baby crib in a bedroom.

The house was kept in an outrageous condition with nothing in its place, food left out and spoiled, and belongings scattered everywhere. Clothing, articles, spoilage, and debris were stacked everywhere around the house.

James Sargent told police he “thought” he had maybe moved Benjamin once or twice during the eight day period but
upon further questioning, he conceded that he may not have been moved at all. The person from the garage tells police that Benjamin was found just as he had left him eight days earlier.

The 'mother' was in Iowa, where she had gone to see-a male boyfriend she found over the internet. She told police that
caring for her baby Benjamin was not her duty and that it was James' responsibility. Before heading to Iowa on the day before Benjamin was found dead, Tracy Hermann said she looked at the baby in the crib and presumed he was sleeping so she said she stuck a bottle between the baby and the side of the carseat so that when he woke up he could grab it and feed himself if he was hungry. In case the court missed it earlier, Benjamin Sargent was five months old.

Tracy Hermann also has a daughter, almost 3, who Tracy Hermann seems to have 'given'away' to a family member. A
shelter care hearing on that matter now pends in the circuit court because I am also seeking to remove her permanently and forever from any contact with Tracy Herman.

Preliminary examination of Benjamin Sargent’s body showed that he weighed 10 pounds, suffered from sepsis in the
blood and tissue, was without proper liquid and food and that he died from starvation due to neglect by the two defendants who stand before you, Tracey D. Herman and James E. Sargent.

This case file was printed in today's edition of the Peoria Journal Star

PEORIA, Ill. — A central Illinois couple faces first-degree murder charges in the death of their 5-month-old baby, who was found unresponsive in a car seat that had been placed in a crib. Both Tracey Hermann, 21, and James Sargent, 23, appeared Wednesday in Peoria County Circuit Court in the death of Benjamin Sargent. The charges state the parents' actions or lack thereof, were "brutal and heinous . . . indicative of wanton cruelty," factors that could mean they face up to 100 years in prison if convicted. The 5-month-old was dropped off at his parents' house on Feb. 4, strapped into his car seat. Eight days later, he was found in the same position, said Peoria County State's Attorney Kevin Lyons during a bond hearing for the parents. "He died from starvation due to neglect from these two defendants, his parents," Lyons said. "It's the worst case of child neglect we have seen since the turn of this century." Sargent said virtually nothing, during a 20-minute hearing before Peoria County Circuit Judge Glenn Collier. Hermann told Collier her attorney was in Hawaii so she requested a court-appointed lawyer. Collier ordered the two held without bond pending a hearing Friday, when it is expected that Lyons will present more evidence as to why the two should not be released pending trial. Peoria County Coroner Johnna Ingersoll said Wednesday the baby weighed 10 pounds when he was found by police. He was nearly eight pounds at birth, she said. Reading from a prepared statement, Lyons said police found the infant sitting in his own waste, all the while strapped into the seat which was in a crib. During the eight days the baby was strapped in the seat, both Hermann and Sargent were home, "playing video games, watching TV, feeding and caring for themselves," Lyons said. Lawyers in the state's attorney's juvenile division have begun proceedings to permanently remove Hermann's 3-year-old daughter from the home. That child was staying with another family member but is now in the care of Department of Family and Children's Services.


Kayce said...

That's absolutely horrifying. I don't even have words for how scared this makes me, to know there are people like this in the world.

Erin said...

I can't even believe what I am reading! How can people do that to an innocent child! That makes me ill!

Erin said...

Even thinking about this I still feel like bursting into tears. I can't even imagine the pain that baby must have gone through. Makes me want to go get my Hailey and hug her so tight and never let her go. Children are so innocent :( It's just so sad.

Wendy said...

My gramma called and told me about this. (She lives near Peoria) She was sooo upset...Horrifying!!

Jaime said...

And people get angry at me when I say I believe in making people such as this sterile.

This breaks my heart.

Anonymous said...

Da kann ich nur zustimmen..