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Toddler dies after older siblings put her in oven, turn it on

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HOUSTON — Texas Child Protective Services says a toddler who died from severe burns was put in an oven by one of her two 3-year-old siblings when the children were left alone in their Houston apartment.

KTRK-TV reports court documents it obtained show 19-month-old J’zyra Thompson’s two siblings told CPS investigators that one of them put the girl in the oven and the other turned it on.

Police believe the girl was one of four children who were left alone Monday by their mother and her boyfriend.

According to court records, the two 3-year-olds told CPS workers they made the oven “hot.” They said the baby was kicking the oven door while inside.

CPS workers say in court documents that charges are expected to be filed.


  • Jt1

    Such a terrible tragedy. Did these kids know what they were doing or what would happen once they turned the oven on?

  • Deborah Phillips

    This story is so hard to believe how did the 3 year old kids manage to put the baby in the oven and turn the stove on. Situation very questionable I believe the mother and boyfriend needs too be questioned until the truth is known about this baby’s death. Where was the mother has it been verified boyfriend whereabouts, I need more information before I can say this story is not full of lies I just don’t believe those babies did this crime.

    • Sorreah

      No, I think what you are underestimating is not their ability to learn it, but how they would learn it in the first place. Let me state: they are completely capable of learning through example. What I find hard is that a mother and boyfriend that would leave four kids that age home alone would even give them the opportunity to learn how to work an oven in the first place.

    • Kim

      While I was in the shower my two year old bust him and his 1 yo brother out of baby jail. He put his evenflo hi-chair up against the door, took the chain off, put his brother in his walker, and escaped. I think plenty of parents have put their children down for a nap and went to take a lengthy shower, so I did nothing wrong. But I got out and discovered my kids missing and my front door open. This child of mine a year later cut off his brothers ponytail and taped it back on. That was at 3. Smart boy. He graduated HS at 16. At 2 and 3 playing in a kiddie kitchen is normal too. I can definitely see them knowing what to do.
      From reading the article I assumed they were playing on or around the cold stove. Now I also am trying to figure out if the shelves were in the oven or not, and if the oven door was heavy, was the stove open already, if so why? If gas they would have to push in not just turn. If electric it may be digital. But kids are pretty smart. We underestimate them daily.

      • Kari

        This mom wasn’t taking a long shower. You’re kids went on an adventure, these kids murdered their sibling… there’s a bit of a difference between a little boy wanting to go outside with his brother or cutting his hair and listening to him slowly burn to death, This mother was gone for a long time. Neighbors said that this mother was always leaving her kids to fend for themselves. There is no sympathy for this kind of negligence.

      • Wilson

        Perhaps if you took more frequent shorter showers as opposed to a longer monthly shower yo keeds wouldn’t have escaped???

      • Sarah Chapman

        To Wilson: don’t be a dick. You’re obviously not a mother. Don’t attack the comments, keep ur eye on the parents who fd up.

  • Ken Deemer

    I keep reading in the comments about the “parents”. There was only one parent mentioned in this article, the other person was her boyfriend. In reality, mothers are responsible for most child abuse followed by live in boyfriends or girlfriends then fathers, my guess is that the father of this child had access denied and also how many fathers are there for these kids?

    • Charles

      If that were the case, it would be because most men aren’t taking care of their own children at all (a form of neglect), but in reality pedophiles, terrorists, and rapists are most assuredly male.

    • Charles

      You’re literally conjuring up “facts” to support your own misogynist views, psychologists would advise you to make peace with your own self-hatred toward women due to your repressed homosexuality.

  • Gloria Stevens

    I am trying to wrap mind around this entire tragic situation?¿! Any stove that I have seen had knobs for turning on the oven on the upper or top of the stove unlike the older ones where the knobs were reachable from the front and kids could reach it. Secondly, all kids should know the feeling of what “hot feels like and know this pain by being curious so how could they even begin to think about putting a live life of anyone inside it? Last, if a 19 month old was in that kind of pain then nothing could hold that baby from kicking up out of that confined space with super human strength! Did the kids also press against the door to prevent the child from getting out of the oven?! The holes in this story are big as Texas and something tells me that there is way more to it!!! God bless this baby’s soul. It must have been horrific to even go through something like this….SMH

  • nenamatahari

    I agree. I think there’s something fishy here. How can a 3 year old know how to do this? Their brains aren’t developed enough to do something so complex. I think the boyfriend did it and coached the kids.

  • Siobhán Elizabeth

    I know a lot of people are skeptical about the children’s ability to put their sister in the oven, but police are very skeptical people, if they believe the kids they must have reasons. Perhaps evidence that they mom and boyfriend were not home, testimony from the neighbors that leaving them alone was common. And kids can do a lot more than people realize (my ex was a toddler when she figured out how to make the kitchen drawers steps to get to what she thought was root beer in the cabinet but was some kind of cleaner, same color. Burned her vocal chords but otherwise OK, amazingly. And her mom was home, just turned her back a second, maybe to use the bathroom…. that’s how fast kids can do elaborate and dangerous things). What’s odd to me is that the kids put their sister in the oven, as opposed to a toy, if they were curious. Something isn’t right there. Maybe the adults did coach the kids into taking the blame….but why would they want to kill just this one child and in such a way that was clearly hard to hide (someone called the police)? The adults will be charged with the death, not the 3 year olds, anyway. But if this wasn’t the adults coaching the kids to lie, then there is something seriously wrong with those 3 year olds. Surely the baby did more than kick, I bet she screamed and cried something awful and they just listened? People are born psychopaths, no empathy, but usually it doesn’t manifest itself at 3 years old…. but that isn’t normal. Kids that want to play with fire or heat burn objects, not people.

  • Precious

    Toddlers climb. Older kids encourage. They entice the little one to play or hide in the oven. They turn the knobs. They are entertaining themselves because they have no supervision. People too stupid to breed let this happen. Please take these little children and give them to someone responsible.

  • Teresa K Wedemeyer

    i babysat my younger siblings when I was 10 yrs old, that meant i was watching a 6 yr old and a toddler. I would chase them around the house and lock them in rooms. i once got my 6 year old brother ready for school and sent him, even though i knew there was no school.He made his way to school and back, but went to a store to buy a super ball on the way home, he could have easily disappeared! ( this was in the 70s and my Mom was single and in Nursing school) I shutter to think what could have happened, i dont think i even knew to call the police/ 911 at the time. “Older” Kids are NOT babysitters. I had no sense of responsibility, i was just a child myself, thank god nothing horrible happened. Kids get bored and run amok. These kids were under 5?! They dont even understand death…I hope they hold that Mother responsible and find better homes for these kids.

  • MK

    A toddler would absolutely crawl in there though….they climb on anything…the fact that the 3 year olds turned it on while she was in there…probably mimicking what they saw mom do. Mom should be sterilized at the very least and boyfriend neutered..

  • Lorett

    My guess is she died of the usual cause: got beat up by momma’s new boyfriend. Like usually they came up with a spineless excuse to keep his sorry a$$ around a little longer.

  • GG

    I have a hard time sleeping since I heard this story, I think about the child kidding the stove door in intense heat.
    I am sick about the whole thing. I am mad at the children, I am mad at the mother, I am mad that an innocent child
    suffered a horrible death, I can;t seem to forget this image out of my mind. I am so disturbed about this.
    God Bless the child.
    Please people watch the children,…… they need us to protect them……
    not harm them..

  • teriakin

    Do you realize the trailer to the movie “The Visit” was of a grandmother telling a child to get into the oven. kids watch A LOT OF TV. They could have seen this trailer a dozen or more times on regular television commercial breaks on the weeks leading up to the movie release. Also the kids didn’t put baby in a got oven. They put her in a cold oven that they eventually turned on. Baby might not have been hot immediately and with lack of coordination (or passing out from fumes and heat) could not kick herself out.

  • teriakin

    Not weird at all. Kids close each other up in closets, refrigerators, toy boxes….all kinds of little hideouts. Them turning on the oven is no different than playing house.

  • Carl

    That is pretty amazing for 3 year olds. Especially to find the right key and have the dexterity to put it in correctly and turn it over long and hard enough to turn the engine over not to mention push the pin in order to move the shifter into gear. I’d say you have some future magicians on your hands.

    • Brad

      What the hell are you smoking? The baby was put it an oven. What oven has a key, a shifter and engine? Did you even read the story? It has nothing to do with a car.

  • TJ

    Y’all better stop underestimating these children… If my 1YEAR OLD Can understand how to turn on and off the stove.. Why can’t a 3 yr old?

    I don’t even take 💩💩💩 or showers in my home unless someone is there to watch my son… Even when he is sleeping! Because kids now in days are THAT smart and quick.

  • toneyp

    I don’t see how they could even reach the buttons on the stove let alone work the buttons. I think they were giving this idea and left alone to carry it out. So sad for all the babies. Hope they get some good counseling. God fix it!!!

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  • tracy

    I honestly don’t believe the 3 year Olds put their sibling in the oven and turned it on, but then again if the parents was never home I guess they wasn’t taught the dangers of not touching the stove. And if the neighbors knew the parents always left the children alone why didn’t they do more to help? This is so disturbing to read, RIP angel.

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  • QtipD

    I’m pretty sure I’ve got this figured out. I suspect that the children were in bed, the mother and boyfriend went out leaving them alone (as we obviously know they had done in the past). I bet that they had the oven on with the door open for heat as so many people do (unfortunately). The Baby is crying, wakes up the other kids who I’m sure are cold too. They think maybe that’s why the baby is crying. They want to warm the baby up, they either place her on the open oven door or she climbs on. I have a regular size oven, I opened the door and put some weight on it, it didn’t take much of my weight to start lifting the back of the stove up. A lot of apartments have those smaller size ovens I’ve noticed. So they place her on the door or she climbs up, her 20+ body lifts the back of that stove up and it hits the ground trapping her because now the oven door is laying on the floor. Parents come back, realized they really f*ed up and begin “coaching” the others on what to say. Best believe that someone in the building heard that oven fall over, believe that.

  • Sharon McAnulty

    I am sickened a mother would leave such young children alone!! One alone is bad enough but all of them? I wouldnt keave my son alone untill he was 13 years and even then it wasnt regularly and checkins were the ecpected norm. These siblings knew what they were doing was wrong but they use an immature part of the himd brain and are incapable of rational thought. This mother should not have care of any of her kids now. All us IVF mums are
    Hurting for this innocent vulnerable angel. Go in peace little dear one.

  • Meg Garcia

    How horrific! I can’t even bear to think about that poor baby and how much she suffered. She must’ve been terrified, trying to kick down that door. So tragic and heartbreaking! Rest in peace, sweet angel. <3

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