A 3-year-old child died Sunday afternoon after a family member brought him to Waldo County General Hospital in Belfast, according to the Maine State Police.
The state police’s Major Crimes Unit is investigating the death in Stockton Springs. The Office of the Chief Medical Examiner has performed an autopsy, though state police aren’t releasing the cause of death, according to Shannon Moss, spokesperson for the Maine Department of Public Safety.
State police learned of the child’s death at approximately 2:30 p.m. on Sunday afternoon.
A spokesperson for Waldo County General Hospital said Tuesday afternoon that she had no additional information.
With the major crimes unit investigating, the 3-year-old boy’s death marks the third high-profile death of a young child in the Bangor region in less than a month.
Less than a week later, on June 6, Hillary Goding was charged with manslaughter in the death of her 3-year-old daughter, Hailey Anne Goding, in Old Town.
Hillary Goding called 911 on June 4, saying her daughter was unresponsive and not breathing. Prosecutors said she didn’t immediately seek medical treatment for her daughter, who died two days later at Northern Light Eastern Maine Medical Center in Bangor.
Before this spring, the most recent killing of a young child happened in Presque Isle on March 17, 2019, when Matthew Leavitt, 35, fatally shot his 14-month-old son, Quinten Leavitt, before he fatally shot himself.
The 3-year-old’s death on Sunday marks the second high-profile death of a child in Stockton Springs since 2018.
In February 2018, 10-year-old Marissa Kennedy was beaten to death by her mother, Sharon Kennedy, and stepfather, Julio Carrillo, in the family’s Stockton Springs condominium.
The 10-year-old’s beating death, following the death of 4-year-old Kendall Chick in Wiscasset two months earlier, focused intense scrutiny on Maine’s child welfare system. The state had received 25 reports about Marissa Kennedy and her family in the 16 months leading up to her murder, when the family lived in Bangor and then Stockton Springs.
The reports often alleged Carrillo’s violent, controlling behavior toward Marissa and Sharon Kennedy, but no one managed to confirm he was abusing the girl — a finding that would have prompted the state to remove her from her mother and stepfather’s custody.
Last year, 11 children died after the state’s child welfare system had received reports concerning their safety, though none of those deaths was ruled a homicide, according to the Maine Department of Health and Human Services. Most of those deaths were ruled accidents, according to DHHS.