For days there had been signs that things were unraveling for 19- year-old Shana Myles this January.
She'd been spending her time in the Northeast Washington homes of her baby's grandparents, determined to take care of her four kids by herself to avoid being a burden, she told police.
But she was getting frustrated. One relative told investigators that she asked for a hug and kiss earlier in the week "because I'll probably get locked up," according to the affidavit filed in support of an arrest warrant.
The problem, she said, was her baby's father. When she got upset with him, she told police, it affected the way she handled 10-month-old Jeniya.
When she was angry, she told police, she'd shake the baby and grab her roughly. She'd throw her into the car seat. She demonstrated to investigators how she would slam the baby onto the sofa. "She attributes her abusive treatment of J.M. as a result of her being angry with J.M.'s father and J.M.'s remarkable physical resemblance to her father," the affidavit says.
She just wanted the baby to be quiet, she told police.
By Jan. 11, family members were worried about Jeniya's lethargy, the squeaky noises she made trying to breathe, the affidavit says. They called 911, then drove her to Children's Hospital.
Jeniya Myles died Jan. 12.
The D.C. medical examiner ruled that the cause of death was blunt-impact head trauma. Hospital records showed multiple injuries, from 48 hours old to a week old, including swelling and bleeding in the brain, according to the affidavit.
Shana Myles was charged with first-degree murder. At an April 26 hearing, a judge released her on her own recognizance and ordered that she be electronically monitored. Her three surviving children are in foster care. Until her case comes to trial, she's staying with a relative. Her mother.
-- Natalie Hopkinson