Family wants justice for 5-year-old girl who was beaten to death. Prosecutors say a 10-year-old boy did it

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Authorities made two arrests in a months-long WRAL Investigation into the death of a 5-year old-girl in Wake County.

Investigators said a 10-year-old boy beat the girl to death at the Raleigh home of her half-sister’s paternal grandmother, Shirletta Yolando Moore. It happened while Moore was working, investigators said.

Moore, 58, is charged with one felony count of negligent child abuse resulting in serious bodily injury and three misdemeanor counts of child abuse. Her brother, Anthony Darrell Moses, 62, faces three misdemeanors for failing to report crimes against a juvenile.

The counts all surround the death of 5-year-old Tymani Oden and the three other children who were left in the home in July 2022.

Kaiolonniee Oden is Tymani’s relative on the father’s side of the family.

“Tymani was a princess in all aspects. Beautiful. Funny,” Oden told WRAL Investigates.

The little girl’s paternal grandmother, Ketha Oden, is stung by the pain.

“I want justice for Tymani,” Ketha Oden said. “I want to know why they would do this to my grandbaby.

“She was a sweet child and enjoyed life and she would never do anything to hurt anybody.”

At the time of Tymani’s death, her mother Kayakenee Oliver sat in jail on dozens of drug and felony weapons charges. Oliver’s mother, who controlled custody, took Tymani and her 2-year-old half-sister Kalia to a home on Agawam Court in Raleigh. It’s owned by Shirletta Moore, Kalia’s paternal grandmother.

Though Moses now faces charges in the case, he spoke to WRAL Investigates when we visited the home in September. He told WRAL Investigates that his sister went to work and was gone when Tymani was beaten.

“They were alone for I’d say about an hour,” Moses said.

Moses admitted his sister left the girls alone on the night of July 11 along with two other children, the oldest being a 10-year-old boy. He said Moore works three jobs to help support her family. Yet within an hour, emergency crews arrived to find Tymani with critical head injuries.

“Why would you leave a 10-year-old and little kids in the house with a 2-year-old and a 5-year-old?,” Ketha Oden said. “[There] should be an adult in the house. You don’t leave no kids in the house by themselves.”

Tymani’s Beaufort family rushed to UNC Hospital in Chapel Hill to find her barely alive.

“I looked at my 5-year-old cousin, who I seen a week prior to celebrate birthdays,” Kaiolonniee Oden said. “She looked like an alien.”

According to the autopsy investigative report obtained by WRAL Investigates, the child was apparently assaulted by the 10-year-old boy leaving her badly bruised with serious head trauma and a lacerated liver.

“They told us she was beat with a belt and they told us she was beat with a broom,” her cousin, Kaiolonniee Oden, said.

“She was beaten to death like a hate crime” Ketha Oden said.

Moses said his family saw no signs the boy could carry out such an act, but believes he may have been jealous of Tymani’s birthday attention and sought revenge after she told on him earlier for something he did.

The killing only deepens the rift between families on Tymani’s mother’s side and her father, Tyquan Oden. He told WRAL Investigates all of this was avoidable.

“Why take a three-hour drive to them people she’s not kin to?” Tyquan Oden said. “If she would have been with us, this never would have happened.”

The family on the father’s side also blames social services for allowing Tymani to be put in a dangerous situation. They feel the system failed the little girl.

“She should have been given to her father, but she was left with her grandmother and that was ok for social services,” Kaiolonniee Oden said.

Three months after the incident, prosecutors finally made the move, which is less than 24 hours before WRAL Investigates’ story aired. They charged Moore and Moses.

The news is welcome to the girl’s frustrated family on her father’s side.

“If a 10-year-old beat this child to death, then an adult needs to be held responsible for that 10-year-old’s actions,” Kaiolonniee Oden said.

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