Fairfield grandmother admits to drowning 4-year-old grandson, police say

A Northern California grandmother who police say admitted to drowning her 4-year-old grandson in a bathtub has been charged with murder and assault on a child, according to officials. 

Dawn Raines-Hewes, 51, has been in custody since Tuesday morning, when police said neighbors saw her run screaming from her house, then found her grandson unconscious inside.

At her initial court apperance Thursday, a court-appointed public defender delayed her arraignment until next week, a Soloano County prosecutor said. 

Officials said there was so much commotion that neighbors, a passerby and a motorist called police.

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None of Raines-Hewes' neighbors knew what to think when they saw her screaming. Those who went inside her home to see what was going on found 4-year-old Richard Kite soaking wet and unconscious in the hallway.

Paramedics rushed the boy to a hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

“During the investigation, the grandmother admitted to the intentional act of drowning her grandson,” Fairfield police said in a statement Wednesday. Raines-Hewes allegedly moved the body to the hallway after the drowning. 

Authorities have not released a possible motive. The boy's sisters, ages 1 and 6, were in another room and were unharmed.

Fairfield Police Officer Cleo Mayoral declined to say what Raines-Hewes may have screamed as she ran out of the house. Neither drugs nor alcohol appeared to play a role, he said.

Raines-Hewes is being held without bail, according to Solano County jail booking records.

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3:05 p.m.: This article was updated with information on criminal charges.





This article was originally published at 6:34 a.m.