Tamiyah Audain

A poster from Tamiyah Audain's funeral, showing two photos of her, one with a sunflower clenched between her teeth and the other of her in a purple plaid shirt. Tamiyah is a young girl with brown skin and dark brown eyes, her black hair up in a bun. The poster reads, Heaven gained a precious angel. Sunrise, sunset. Miyah.Name: Tamiyah Audain
Died: September 25, 2013
Age at death: 12
Cause of death: Neglect; infection and starvation
Location: Lauderhill, Florida, USA

Tamiyah Audain loved food and loved to smile. When she saw family members, she would always greet them with a big hug.

Tamiyah, who had autism and tuberous sclerosis, lived with her mother until her mother died. Her father and grandparents could not take care of her, so she was sent to live with a cousin until a more permanent place for her could be found.

She lived in an apartment complex with an open courtyard, and used to sit in her wheelchair in the courtyard. She was enrolled in school at a center for disabled children.

Tamiyah’s tuberous sclerosis meant that she needed help with all her basic needs. Her cousin asked for help multiple times, for money for adult diapers and for assistance in caring for Tamiyah. She received one four-hour home visit.

An application from another relative who wanted Tamiyah to live with her had been ignored since early that year.

In the January before she died, two calls were made to child services, reporting that Tamiyah had bruises all over her body. The investigation was closed and nothing was done.

Before her death, neighbors noticed that Tamiyah no longer went out in the courtyard. She had been absent from school most of the last year, and she did not attend school at all for the five weeks prior to her death. She had missed several medical appointments as well. Tamiyah spent most of the time heavily sedated.

When her cousin found her unresponsive and called emergency services, Tamiyah was already dead. She was emaciated and had severe bedsores.

Tamiyah’s cousin was convicted of child neglect and sentenced to 3 years probation. A social worker was sentenced to 5 years probation.

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