BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KGET) — Tashe Gregory told police a number of things after her 19-month-old died last year.
How much of what she said is true is anyone’s guess.
Detectives say in court documents they caught Gregory in numerous lies as she talked about the death of her daughter. The results of a polygraph test also indicated she was being deceptive.
Gregory admitted her daughter had a fever for several days and neither she nor her boyfriend, Billy Webb, took her to a doctor. She told police they believed the fever was just part of the child’s teething.
She finally rushed her to a hospital when the girl began experiencing trouble breathing, police say in the documents.
The child died the next day. An autopsy determined the Aug. 25, 2018, death resulted from a fractured rib that punctured an intestine, leading to a systemic infection.
Asked about the broken rib, Gregory said Webb “probably” accidentally injured the girl, but said she never witnessed any abuse, the documents say.
Gregory and Webb have each pleaded not guilty to a charge of willful cruelty to a child and are held on $1 million bail. Their next court hearing is set for Dec. 10.
An acquaintance of the two told police both Gregory, 21, and Webb, 32, use alcohol and drugs. Investigators asked Gregory if the girl could have become injured while she and Webb were under the influence.
She said that wasn’t possible because she doesn’t drink or use drugs, according to the documents. Later, however, when asked why she missed an appointment to meet with detectives, she said she had been attending a drug and alcohol counseling session.
Detectives pointed out the contradiction, and Webb told them her grandmother, for unknown reasons, had enrolled her in the session.
Gregory’s other children have been taken into protective custody, including an 8-month-old that a witness said the couple either sold or tried to sell to someone in Arizona, according to the documents.
The woman who had custody of that child said she had been caring for the child since early March 2018. She told police Gregory and Webb were unable to care for another child. She said she’d long known the couple and offered to take the child in.
She denied paying Gregory for the child.
She said in the documents that Gregory demanded $500 from her, but she refused. She said she was supposed to care for the child until Gregory was able to again take custody, but after more time passed she believed she’d be keeping the child long-term.
The woman is not charged in the case.