Melbourne woman charged with manslaughter for July death of 18-month old girl

MELBOURNE, Fla. — A Melbourne woman has been charged with manslaughter of a child after an 18-month old girl was found dead in an “extremely filthy” camper.


According to an arrest report for 24-year-old Melissa Lehman, police responded to Lucky Clover Mobile Home Park in late July where Lehman was living in a small camper with the toddler and two men.

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A 911 caller had reported that the child was unresponsive in the home.

Police arrived to find the child on the kitchen floor of the camper. Paramedics quickly determined the child had no pulse and declared her dead on the scene, according to police.

Months later, an autopsy revealed the child had possibly died of a combination of cocaine toxicity and probable asphyxia due to co-sleeping.

After interviewing the other people in the home, investigators determined Lehman was responsible for the “deplorable and hazardous” living conditions in the camper that police say ultimately contributed to the child’s death.

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Police described additional hazards in the camper to include a “labyrinth” of extension cords and electrical wires, drug paraphernalia in plain view, and an ant and cockroach infestation.

According to Lehman’s arrest report, the child “could have potentially died from any number of the hazards she was subjected to in life.”

Lehman was arrested Tuesday and charged with manslaughter of a child and child neglect with great bodily harm, both felonies.

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She’s being held in the Brevard County jail on no bond.

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