Two high school students charged in newborn’s death
CANTON, Ohio — Two Alliance High School students, including the president of the high school’s senior class, have entered ‘not true’ pleas to charges involving the death of a newborn boy.
Allyce Bryant and John Dallas, both 17, appeared in Stark County Family Court Monday afternoon.
Bryant is charged with child endangering, a third-degree felony, and involuntary manslaughter, a first degree felony, following the death of her newborn who was delivered at home on July 8th.
Authorities were alerted by her father who made a hysterical 911 call, telling dispatchers that the infant was not breathing and that he never knew his daughter was even pregnant.
“I think she was hiding the pregnancy,” said a nearly breathless Bryan Bryant in his call to for help.
“You think she was early in the pregnancy,” asked a dispatcher, to which Bryant again answered “she was hiding the pregnancy.”
Her boyfriend, John Dallas, faces charges of complicity to commit child endangering and complicity to commit involuntary manslaughter. Both charges are also third and first degree felonies.
Dallas was described by his attorney, Eugene Obyrne, as the president of his high school senior class, an honor student who had never before been in any trouble.
“You owe a duty of care as a parent. If you fail to give that duty of care and death results, that’s where the involuntary manslaughter felony one comes in,” said Assistant Stark County Prosecutor Jill Kaminski.
Kaminski did not want to discuss details of the charges, saying she had not yet seen the entire coroner’s report. She did say that the conclusions drawn by the coroner regarding the death of the newborn boy were sufficient to file the charges.
She did not rule out eventually charging the teens as adults.
Attorneys for both Bryant and Dallas on Monday appealed to Chief Magistrate Sally Efremoff to allow the teenagers to go home to their families where they would be able to do their school work over the internet.
Efremoff agreed to release both on house arrest with strict electronic monitoring.
“It’s my understanding they have no prior record, either party they are both what their attorneys claim for them to be,” said Kaminski following Monday’s arraignment, adding “they are honor students and…they go to Alliance High School. I know that in terms of reasons to be held, risk of flight, they haven’t shown any of that and I understand why the court made the decision they did.”
Both teenagers appeared separately in court. Each had family members there to support them but their family members did not speak.
Another pre-trial hearing has been scheduled for early Friday.