STOCKTON (CBS13) – Tragedy struck on Saturday in Stockton where a seven-year-old girl was found dead in her own home.
Police arrested the father of Little Billie, 30-year-old Billy Williams, on charges including battery, child abuse resulting in death/injury, and torture.
“Everybody’s wondering the same thing…how can this father do this to the small daughter,” said Stockton Police Officer Joe Silva.
But Billy’s family says he didn’t do it and that police have the wrong person. Family members claim the household has a history of abuse and that Child Protective Services (CPS) has had to intervene before.
“The teachers, the CPS workers, family members…all failed,” said Jeleesa Davidson, Aunt, Little Billie’s Aunt. “I feel like I failed her.“
“She said ‘it’s about Billie.’ I said what is it, and she said ‘Billy‘s gone,'” said Mattie Palmer, Little Billie’s Grandma.
Palmer claims she was told by Little Billy’s biological mother the girl was drowned, although the coroner has not yet confirmed a cause of death. Family members say that in the midst of the shelter-at-home order there was no way for anyone outside of the family to spot abuse.
“Because now…don’t hit her too hard. You know? She’s got to go to school tomorrow. Well, now there’s no more school. That was a big impact on what happened because the abuse went farther,“ said Davidson.
Family members tell CBS13 they’ve reported abuse of Little Billie to CPS before. CBS13 has reached out to the agency to see if there was, in fact, a history of abuse. We’re waiting to hear back.