Woman charged in death of 4-year-old girl, Catawba County deputies say

VALE, N.C. — A woman has been charged in the death of a 4-year-old girl in Catawba County, according to the sheriff’s office.

Earlier this week, deputies said they were investigating the death of Hazel Lidey at a home in Vale as a criminal act.

On Friday, they said Chelsea Crompton, the girlfriend of Lidey’s father, had been charged with murder in the young girl’s death. Crompton was taken into custody in Madison County and is being held with no bond in the county jail.

“Our communities have been shocked by the senseless violence that caused Hazel’s death,” said Catawba County Sheriff Donald Brown. “We mourn with the Lidey family as they grieve the loss of their child. Justice for Hazel.”

The sheriff’s office said it was called on Nov. 17 around 2:15 p.m. to Hill Haven Drive in Vale for an unresponsive 4-year-old girl.

According to a search warrant in the case, the original call was for an overdose. But when EMS arrived, they found bruises on the child, the warrant says.

“The child was reported by EMS to have suffered trauma-related injuries, due to the presence of bruising all over the body,” it reads.

Hazel Lidey was flown to a hospital in Charlotte that day, where she died four days later.

Court documents say Lidey’s father, Christopher Lidey, and Crompton were at the home.

After announcing Lidey’s death earlier this week, deputies said they were working the case around the clock and were waiting for the medical examiner’s report.

Deputies cut out a section of a wall inside the home where the 911 call came from as part of the investigation, the warrant says. A metal bat was also removed from the residence.

Channel 9 learned that Crompton spoke with 911 dispatchers before Hazel Lidey was airlifted to the hospital.

On the call, Christopher Lidey told dispatchers, “I got a 4-year-old I think she may be detoxing … well now she’s blue in the mouth.”

When asked how old the child was, Christopher Lidey said she was 4 years old.

Investigators said a female voice heard on the 911 call was later identified as Crompton. Crompton can be heard telling the dispatcher that they needed an ambulance and explaining Hazel’s condition.

“I think it’s because she hasn’t been eating regularly,” Crompton told dispatchers. “She’s been lethargic. Hey baby … come on ... come on.”

Friends of the family told Channel 9′s Dave Faherty earlier this week they were devastated by the news and want justice for Hazel.

“Hazel, she was just a breath of fresh air. A beautiful child,” Melissa Caudle said. “She was just happy. I don’t see how anybody could hurt her.”

Crompton made her first court appearance on Monday. Channel 9′s Dave Faherty was in the courtroom to capture the family’s emotional response to Crompton’s presence.

Faherty said family members yelled the phrase “baby killer” as Crompton appeared before the judge in Newton.

Channel 9 spoke with Hazel’s grandmother after Crompton asked for a court-appointed attorney and was told this could be a capital murder case.

“She’s my grandbaby. She was the light of my life. She was beautiful. She never hurt nobody, Mary Jackson said.

Faherty said Crompton said very little during her court appearance.

(WATCH BELOW: Investigators: Man accused of Catawba Co. murder was released from prison 2 weeks prior)

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