GASTON COUNTY, N.C. — The grief over the death of 3-year-old Jordyn Dumont could be seen on the faces of Gaston County community members, especially her neighbors who lived right next door.
Several neighbors told Channel 9 anchor Paul Boyd they believe Jordyn lived in a violent and abusive home.
Police confirmed that they had been called out to the home 49 times in the past three years.
Neighbors Michael and Nicole broke down when they heard the little girl had been found dead near their home.
They did not want Channel 9 to use their last name.
“There's no way possible I could put into words what I’m feeling right now except I wish I could turn back time,” Nicole said.
Channel 9 saw Nicole speaking with an investigator Tuesday. Michael and Nicole said that after Jordyn was reported missing Monday they told police they believed the little girl had been abused about a month ago.
“She had two black eyes,” Nicole said.
“The little girl did? Were they fresh injuries?” Boyd asked.
“Fresh man, cause you know, a couple of days after they turn blue. Fresh they don't do that. They turn red. So you know they were fresh,” Michael said.
When asked if they called police that day, Michael said, “Let me explain to you and tell you why we didn't, because I said, 'Man, what's wrong with that kid? Something isn’t right.' He said the kid fell down. I gave him the benefit of the doubt,” Michael said.
But Nicole said she asked the little girl what happened.
“The little girl told me that her momma blacked her eye because she was mad at her daddy,” Nicole said.
The mother's boyfriend, William McCullen, is now charged with killing Jordyn.
Another neighbor said he also told police about a day recently when the girl's mother came running to his house.
“His (McCullen) wife come over here. He had busted her upside the head with an ashtray. She was bleeding profusely all on the floor and everywhere,” the neighbor said.
Investigators wouldn't comment on the allegations of abuse, but looking back, Nicole said she's overcome with regret for not doing more.
“If anybody sees a child with a black eye and you've been told they fell down don't take it for granted,” she said.
A 1-year-old sibling was also living in the home with Jordan. Sources have indicated that the Department of Social Services is currently caring for that child.
The Gaston County DSS said its staff is heartbroken about Jordyn’s death.
"While confidentiality laws prevent us from commenting about a specific case, we want the public to know that our professionals stand ready to assist in any way possible,” the DSS said in a statement.
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