Trial begins for mother accused of 2023 manslaughter after child found dead in pond

Published 9:26 am Tuesday, June 11, 2024

The trial of a mother accused of manslaughter after one of her two children was found dead in a pond after they had been allowed to wander away from home for hours began Monday.

The trial of Brooke Mallett was slated to begin Monday in Warren County Circuit Court.

Brooke Mallett is accused of manslaughter by culpable negligence and two counts of child neglect in connection with the April 21, 2023, death.

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According to the indictment filed in August, Mallett’s young children, ages 3 and 5, walked away from their home.

At the time of the incident, Warren County Sheriff Martin Pace said the children were gone for “what appeared to be hours without the mother and boyfriend knowing.”

Mallet’s boyfriend John Duke Walker was also arrested in connection with the death.

Following the children leaving their home, Mallett’s older child wandered to the home of a neighbor. The neighbor contacted the Warren County Sheriff’s Office, which began searching for the child’s parent.

Deputies later found the door to Mallett’s home open and questioned her about the child.

At that time it was discovered a second child was missing.

Deputies located 3-year-old Kaden Mallett deceased in a nearby pond.

Mallett and Walker were originally charged with murder, but a Grand Jury reduced Mallett’s charge to manslaughter.

She is also charged with two counts of child neglect – one for each child.

In October, Mallett was released on bond. District Attorney Ricky Smith and Assistant District Attorney Michael Warren will present the case for the prosecution. Mallett is represented by Alton Peterson of Jackson.