Neglect charges dropped against group home workers

By: The Associated Press
By: The Associated Press

An Allen County judge has dismissed neglect charges against two group home employees charged in the death of a resident.

Prosecutors asked Judge Fran Gull to dismiss the charges of neglect of a dependent causing death against 23-year-old Erica Wheeler 26-year-old Valerie Mann after learning that a private laboratory destroyed a key piece of evidence in the death of David Beville.

After Beville died in April 2007, a toxicology test found high levels of alcohol in his blood. But a forensic laboratory acknowledged that it discarded a second sample. Because of that, chief deputy prosecutor Michael McAlexander says they could not establish beyond question that the original sample was from Beville.

Officials at the group home said they were still investigating Beville's death.

Allen County Coroner Jon Brandenberger said the dismissal would not change his ruling that Beville's death was a homicide.


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