Thursday, 09 July 2020 21:35

Canadensis couple charged with murder of infant

HONESDALE – Wayne Tompkins and Emily Mack, both of Canadensis, have been charged with homicide for the death of their three-month-old daughter, identified in court papers as W.T.

Pathologist Dr. Rameen Starling-Roney found the cause of death to be ”...multiple traumatic injuries and methamphetamine toxicity and cocaine exposure.”

Dr. Starling-Roney also found ”...numerous acute and healing fractures at various stages of healing....” along with ”...multiple contusions/bruises of the torso and extremities...”

According to the affidavit of probable cause, filed by Pennsylvania State Police (PSP) Trooper Gregory Allen:

Wayne County Children and Youth (CYS) had an ongoing investigation with Mack, the child’s mother, since before the child was born ”...due to drug abuse.

“Mack was being treated for drug abuse with Methadone.”

Wayne County CYS ceased their services with the family on Aug. 9, 2018.

On Sept. 25, 2019, Mack was interviewed by PSP Corporal William Wagner and Tpr. Allen. During this interview, she ”...made admission to being prescribed methadone for over a year due to an opiate addition, specifically heroin.”

She added that ” recently as two month ago she had a relapse,” and stated that ”...she used drugs within hours of W.T’s death.”

 Mack stated on the above date, ”...she was sleeping in her bedroom accompanied by her three-year-old child and W.T.” The infant woke in the night, causing Mack to remove her from the bedroom so the three-year-old wouldn’t be disturbed.

She told police she fed W.T. a bottle of formula, ”...cradled W.T. in her arm and they both fell asleep on the couch.”

Mack woke up with W.T. still cradled in her arms, and put her ” the swing in front of the couch...” before going to use the bathroom.

Upon returning to the living room, Mack retrieved W.T. from the swing, ”...sat down on the couch and noticed that W.T.’s neck was cold to touch.”

She sought help from Tompkins, her boyfriend, and after failed attempts to wake the child asked her step-father for aid. It was at that time 911 was called.

When interviewed by police, Tompkins gave a conflicting account of the sleeping position of W.T.

 He ”...admitted to using drugs within hours of W.T’s death,” and stated he was also prescribed methadone.   Tompkins said ”...he was asleep in the living room lying...on the couch.”

He related to officers that ”...sometime in the middle of the night, Tompkins awoke to Mack putting W.T. on the couch between (his) legs and the back of the couch.”

They both fell asleep ”...on the couch with the order being from the back cushions of the couch W.T., Tompkins and Mack.”

Tompkins woke up, ”...and crawled over Mack to go outside to smoke a cigarette.”

When he returned to the living room, ”...Mack asked Tompkins to check on W.T. due to her not moving.

“Tompkins related W.T. was now positioned at the corner of the couch. Tompkins retrieved W.T. from the couch where she was cold to the touch.”

 Alternate Forensic Services Unit Member PSP Tpr. Robert Wareham Wareham and PSP Trooper Sharon Palmer searched the home, and found ” to be in deplorable condition.” The affidavit states there was a “loaded” hypodermic needle, ”...marijuana pipe with residue and a container of suspected marijuana located in the living space of the residence.”

On March 20, Mack was interviewed a subsequent time with her legal counsel present. At this interview, she told officer that ”...she is still using illegal drugs on occasion and during the time of W.T.’s death would do drugs inside the house.”

Mack said ”...she is afraid that Wayne is going to hurt her because he has been physically abusive towards her.”

She told police that after the incident, Tompkins told her ”...he doesn’t remember much from that night because he was high on drugs,” and that ”...on the night of the death she remembers waking up and seeing Wayne on the couch holding the baby on his lap as he was slumped over.”

Mack told law enforcement Tompkins ”...has lived with her daily since the birth of W.T. and that Wayne would burp W.T. ... very aggressively with striking hard blows to the back.”

Mack also stated the child was only fed with formula from a bottle, and had never been breast fed.

Tompkins and Mack were arrested on criminal homicide charges July 7 in Bensalem Twp., Bucks County.

They were arraigned July 9 before Magisterial District Judge Linus Myers at the Wayne County Courthouse.



Last modified on Thursday, 09 July 2020 21:38

Disclaimer: The ideas expressed below are the personal thoughts and opinions of Nate Covington and do not necessarily reflect the position of Barrett Township or the Board of Auditors.


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