• The toddler was found unresponsive on Nov. 20, 2020. 
  • She died after four days on life support  
  • Fargo Police said an autopsy revealed numerous blunt force injuries on Meka

A 37-year-old North Dakota woman has been arrested in connection with the murder of a 15-month-old child.

Brandi Adeleke has been charged with murder two months after 15-month-old Meka Ducheneaux was found unresponsive on Nov. 20, 2020. She died after four days on life support, said a report by People.

Cass County Jail records said Adeleke, a longtime family friend of Meka's caregivers, will face one count of murder and one count of felony child abuse.

According to Amanda Carillo, Meka’s aunt and primary caregiver, Adeleke asked her to have Meka for a Halloween sleepover at her south Fargo apartment.

Carillo agreed to the request as Adeleke had been watching Meka and Carillo's children for many years. "Adeleke was considered very trustworthy. At the end of the weekend when Meka was expected back home, Adeleke said she had COVID-19 and Meka would have to quarantine with her," said Carillo.

On Nov. 20, Adeleke came over to inform Carillo that Meka was in the hospital. Carillo said she assumed it was due to Covid.

"When I get to the hospital, and it was like walking through a crime scene. I saw the rulers that you measure bruises. I looked at Adeleke and said, ‘What did you do to my niece?' She said, ‘She’s just sick and is going to be fine. Then, I said this doesn’t look like fine," Carillo was quoted as saying by the media outlet.

According to Fargo Police, an autopsy revealed numerous blunt force injuries on Meka. A police statement said they were called to a home "for an unconscious and unresponsive" girl.

As per the court documents, Adeleke gave the child a bath but left the toddler unattended, causing her to drown. It said Adeleke admitted to pinching and slapping Meka’s face when she was unresponsive.

“What did my niece do to you, but love you? She loved you so much. What did she do to you to make you so mad? And why didn’t you bring her home? When did you stop loving her," asked Carillo.

She said she is glad Adeleke is behind bars. "I hope she never sees the light of day again. I hope she thinks about this for the rest of her life and I hope it tortures her,” said Carillo.

The family has set up a GoFundMe page to pay Meka's medical bills.

Crime scene
Representational image AFP / Johannes EISELE