Mother charged in child’s death, case heads to grand jury

Published 4:26 pm Tuesday, August 8, 2023


Erica Lawson was scheduled to have her preliminary hearing in the case of her connection to the death of her 17-month-old daughter Elena Hembree today .

Lawson was charged with second-degree manslaughter, failure to report child neglect/abuse, first-degree criminal abuse against a child under 12 and first-degree wanton endangerment.

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Lawson is being held in the Clay County Detention Center on a $1 million bond.

Bell County Commonwealth Attorney Chris Douglas said Lawson waived her right to a preliminary hearing.

The case will go to the Bell County Grand Jury.

According to Douglas, Lawson’s bond remains $1 million.