The torture of a five-year-old in Muncie IN

CharleneTabb spends lifetime in jail for murder, abuse, neglect of Marie Pierre

By Rick Yencer

MUNCIE, INDIANA (NEWS) - The screams of Marie Pierre could be felt amid the silence of Charlene Tabb who received 87 years in prison Wednesday for the murder of the girl left in her care.

The horrific story of beatings, confinement and ultimately death of the five-year-old from Haiti replayed in a sentencing hearing before Delaware Circuit Court 5 Judge Thomas Cannon Jr. who agreed with the state that she represented "the worse of the worse" offenders for allowing her teenage siblings hit the young girl with a hammer and screw driver while doing nothing to aid in her treatment.

Convicted this spring of murder, battery and neglect, Tabb continues to maintain her innocence as she did during the trial and again refused to testify or defend herself on the stand.

Public defender Mike Quirk pointed out Tabb had no prior criminal record and there was no direct evidence that she caused Pierre's death that pointed to hammer blows by Tabb's brother.

However, Tabb and her husband, Marcus, also facing neglect charges,left the children in a house a couple miles away and monitored them with a video camera. That 2012 house of horrors resulted in Pierre being tortured by Tabb's brother and sisters as Tabb would occasionally come to the house and whip Pierre with a cord.

Delaware County Prosecutor Jeff Arnold could not recall a more brutal torture murder during his years of prosecuting crime.

Pierre had more than 80 injuries to her body and finally lost fluid, swollen from beatings, and died.

"There is nobody to speak for her," said Arnold, who criticized Tabb's silence."It is sickening to me."

Even Pierre's father, Levius Gercilus, sat in the courtroom and showed little emotion as the state replayed the torture of his daughter. He later claimed he knew nothing about the Tabb's treatment of his daughter that resulted in her death.

Arnold said Tabb was devoid of human compassion while deputy prosecutor Eric Hoffman called Tabb a rabid, blood thirsty animal who wanted to control and dominate the young girl.

Much if the beating had to do with Pierre repeatedly vomiting whether she was ill or suffered from distress from the beatings.

Cannon agreed with the state to enhance the murder sentence to 65 years while giving Tabb another 22 years on the battery and neglect charges.

Tabb just starred across the room, only answering that she would appeal both the sentence and conviction. She will be confined locally until taken to the Indiana Department of Corrections women's prison.

Her husband, Marcus, also faces trial and he wants to court to move the case outside Delaware County, claiming prejudicial coverage by local media.

The sentencing attracted lawyers, police, including Muncie Police Chief Steve Stewart, child protection workers and probation officials besides media to the courtroom.




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