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Woman says she reported alleged abuse for three months before 20-month-old's death

Woman says she reported alleged abuse for three months before 20-month-old's death
Posted at 6:29 PM, Jul 09, 2024

LEXINGTON, Ky. (LEX 18) — We've been keeping you updated about an investigation into the death of a 20-month-old boy, and now, neighbors question if more should have been done to prevent the toddler's death.

It's been nearly a week since the heartbreaking discovery of 20-month-old Joshua Bowen's body inside a Lexington apartment at Lakeside Manor Apartments.

Constantina Day, who lives at Lakeside Manor apartments, says she has been filing complaints about the alleged abuse since March: "I know that if they took action sooner that baby would still be here."

Bowen's mother, 27-year-old Brianna Johnson, is charged with Criminal Abuse 1st Degree, and 22-year-old Kyle Guindon is charged with Criminal Abuse 1st Degree and Assault 1st Degree (Domestic Violence). Both are held on $250,000 bonds.

Day was able to show us a case number she received on July 4.

"The first time was when I called for the child abuse. They came, they talked to them, they left. The second time they came was a month later," said Day. "The third time they came was Fourth of July and then they came two days later and they found that baby."

Day also called and emailed her apartment manager back in March about the alleged abuse and showed us that email.

"Because of my complaints, I couldn't even email them, but they told me to because they needed it in writing, and that was the best way to do it. But then after you do it you're blocked? Did they not want to deal with it? Did they not care?," Day questioned.

On one of our LEX 18 Facebook posts, others also said they had reported concerns to CPS about the baby's safety.

"You know you promote that 'if you see something say something,' and 'when you hear something say something.' And then when you all receive a report, actually follow through with it. Do a thorough investigation. Not everybody is out here spreading rumors trying to cause turmoil," said Day.

Day stresses that people and officials need to realize that when several reports are made, something is going on, and it needs to be taken seriously.

LEX 18 contacted the Lexington Police Department and the Lakeside Manor Apartments for comment on the possible complaints filed, but neither has responded.

LEX 18 also reached out to the Department for Community-Based Services. They stated:

"We are saddened to learn of the passing of 20-month-old Joshua. We are currently investigating and cannot provide additional comment on the matter at this time.

However, the following is an overview of the process for when the Department for Community Based Services (DCBS) begins investigating allegations of child abuse or neglect.

DCBS follows guidelines as well as the Kentucky regulation standards of practice guidelines. The central intake system consists of nine regional service units who are dedicated to processing statewide reports of abuse or neglect both via phone and online. Calls are first routed to the closest region based on the caller’s area code. If those lines are full, the call routes to the next available central intake worker, which could be from a different part of the state. When online refferals are submitted and the worker completes the intake, an email will automatically be sent to the reporting source notifying them if the report meets or does not meet acceptance criteria. Central intake workers have two hours to process the report and submit for supervisory review and approval. The supervisor then has four hours to further review and make a final determination on if the report meets investigatory criteria that’s established in state law and policy. If a report does not meet criteria for an investigation, it still goes into an electronic documentation system in the instance of future reports being made on the same child/family. All investigations require in person contact."
Department for Community Based Services