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“In the air and everything:” Family says black mold is to blame for death of 7-week-old Milwaukee boy

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MILWAUKEE -- Just seven weeks old, a baby died mysteriously at a Milwaukee home near 12th and Center on June 27th. Now, his parents suspect one thing may have led to his death -- and they want it investigated further.

Family members of Mau'rion Williams said they've been complaining about black mold in the duplex they are living in. They said another person in the home died after having breathing problems in February.

Williams was healthy at birth, according to his mother. Seven weeks later, she found her baby dead.

Mau'rion Williams

The report from the Milwaukee County Medical Examiner's Office said the infant was on a fold-out couch bed next to a 10-year-old sibling. The final cause of death was listed as "undetermined."

The baby's family believes the death may be linked to black mold in the home.

Mau'rion Williams

Mau'rion Williams

Maurice Williams and Tracie Nash

"Mold started growing. Like, we had an inspector come out and they found mold in the air and everything," said Maurice Williams, the baby's father.

City inspectors stopped by the house Wednesday, July 19th to inspect. The family said the inspectors told them the house would not be condemned, but there would be work orders.

FOX6 News has obtained the below photos of the duplex, taken during Wednesday's inspection:


The inspection report lists the following violations that must be corrected by August 23rd:

  • Repair or replace damaged ceiling and and paint to restore a cleanable surface in upper unit dining room
  • Properly seal all open drains and water pipes in upper unit kitchen
  • Repair or replace defective kitchen cabinets in upper unit
  • Restore the basement to a clean and sanitary condition
  • Replace defective door in upper unit/rear east entry door
  • Restore basement structure to a reasonably watertight condition
  • Repair or replace defective basement window frame
  • Repair or replace the defective basement window sill
  • Restore basement window assembly to a rodent-proof condition
  • Install water heater vent pipe with proper pitch to avoid back spillage
  • Repair or replace leaking sewer pipe

Failure to comply could result in daily penalties of $150 to $10,000 for the landlord.

The landlord can appeal.

The family said their son's death was not the first time they called an inspector for mold. In February, a 37-year-old relative died after suffering breathing problems in the house. They said that death was attributed to asthma.

FOX6 News stopped at the landlord's home to ask about the situation at the duplex, but no one came to the door.

Maurice Williams and Tracie Nash

Now, the baby's parents are seeking  answers.

"Look what we're looking at. That's wrong. Like, that pisses me off. I got to look at a box for my son. That's irritating and that's wrong. That's not even my son right there," said Tracie Nash, the baby's mother.

The family said they've placed their other children with relatives outside the home while they figure out what to do next.

The medical examiner said they will be performing further testing to determine how Williams died.

Mau'rion Williams

Mau'rion Williams