Arrest made following 2-year-old child’s death in June

Local News

DES MOINES — One woman has been arrested after her 2-year-old child was found dead inside her apartment in June.

On June 27, the Des Moines Police Department responded to a report of an unresponsive child in the 3600 block of Douglas Avenue. Officers and medics arrived on scene to find a deceased 2-year-old child.

Police discovered that a 2-year-old child and an unrelated 4-year-old child were in the care of 38-year-old Amanda Leonard-Helum.

Leonard-Helum had driven herself and the children from Waterloo to Des Moines the night of June 26, according to police. Upon arriving in Des Moines, Leonard-Helum become aware that the 2-year-old had taken medication. Instead of seeking medical care, she allegedly decided to monitor the child throughout the night.

Leonard-Helum was at the ending stages of adopting the victim, according to court documents.

“After the Defendant had knowledge the victim had access to multiple prescription medications intended for the Defendant, and that the victim had ingested some, the Defendant did not seek medical treatment for the child,” a criminal complaint reads.

Toxicology reports indicate the 2-year-old child died throughout the night due to an overdose of the medications ingested.

Leonard-Helum is being charged with Child Endangerment Causing Death and is currently in Polk County Jail.

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