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Richmond Police investigating death of 10-month-old girl

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RICHMOND, Va. (WTVR)--Richmond Police are actively investigating the death of a 10-month-old baby girl.

Gionna Sydnor was discovered unresponsive exactly one week ago in the care of her mother. Now the child’s grandmother, who said she is shocked and brokenhearted over the loss, is determined to know why the toddler’s life was suddenly cut short.

"I want to know why she died and no one is telling me anything," Adrienne Sydnor,   Gionna's grandmother, said.

Sydnor just can't make sense of it.  She said she may never recover from the news--learned a week ago--that her baby granddaughter Gionna had died. Gionna lived with her mother, Syndor`s daughter, at a Southside apartment.

It was there that she was found dead.

"She had no medical problems...none," Sydnor said.

Sydnor described Gionna as a healthy toddler that was practically inseparable from her twin brother Andreus.

Richmond Police have confirmed they were called around 8:35 a.m. on Monday Nov. 11,  and found Gionna unresponsive. She was transported to Chippenham Medical Center, where she was pronounced dead.

Sources close to the investigation tell CBS 6 that when police arrived to the apartment, they found conditions that were unsanitary and deemed unsafe for the children. A large volume of photographs were taken to document the condition and were presented in court Monday.

"I was worried about the babies because they could not defend themselves,” said Sydnor.

Sydnor claimed she called Richmond Child Protective Services several times in October, and even just two days before Gionna's death because she was worried about the twins living environment.

The agency has yet to confirm that information. CBS 6 has confirmed that immediately after Gionna's death her twin brother Andreus was taken into foster care where he remains now.

Police said they are now waiting on the autopsy findings to determine what comes next in the case and whether there will be charges filed. Sydnor believes Gionna should still be living.

"A baby that's walking and talking--with a mouth full of teeth-- it doesn't happen, especially to a healthy baby," said Sydnor.

The Richmond Medical Examiner's office said Gionna's autopsy is still pending and toxicology tests could take a few more weeks.

A hearing concerning the custody of Gionna's twin brother was held in juvenile court today, but because it was an abuse and neglect hearing, CBS 6 was not allowed inside.

At this time no charges have been filed in this case.



    • Cheryl Godwin

      Adrienne I’m do sorry for the loss of your beautiful grand baby! Keep fighting for answers. God bless you and I will be praying for you and your grandson!

  • Glen Allen

    Such a shame, she is so precious looking, Sometimes God works in ways we may never understand, but I believe he must have had other bigger and better plans for her, and that she will look down over her twin brother forever. I cannot begin to know how the family must feel, but I hope they will take comfort in knowing so many of us have them in our prayers.

  • Melissa

    The grandmother all but said her daughter could have played a role in or contributed to the baby’s death. Unsafe living environment? and the grandmother called CPS numerous time..I really hope they are looking closely at this mother

  • shana

    this is so sad…… I as well had twins an when mine were 5 months almost 6 my daughter Te’Yonnna Tucker passed. I found her face down in the crib I know this family is feeling lots of pain cps even took mine although they stayed with family they claim they had to invetagate. Her twin recently celibrated his 2nd birthday we release pink an white balloons evey year. I am here if u wanna talk…….. Please google her name an see her and read our story

  • Lucy

    Richmond CPS is not doing there job with a lot of cases. I too have concerns with there process of determining what is considered a dangerous environment. How many more situations need to occur before they step it up. If the grandmother hadn’t gone to the news they wouldn’t have taken her brother.

    • Robin Bailey

      True. Richmond CPS are not doing there jobs. This is why everytime I turn on the news somebody’s child killing hurt or killed because of these dumb a$$ parents. This is a sorry city!!! I wouldn’t let my dog live in city of Richmond.

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