Trial continues for woman accused of murdering grandson

Author: Christina Lusby
Published: Updated:

LEE COUNTY, Fla.- Investigators say a toddler was tortured and killed by people who should have been protecting him.

In court Wednesday, jurors heard Gale Watkins tell detectives about the night her grandson, Michael McMullen, was wrapped in a blanket so tightly he couldn’t breathe. The 3-year-old later died.

Jurors watched a reenactment of the way the toddler was wrapped, along with videos of detectives interviewing the grandmother.

In the trial and through a taped interview with detectives, testimony revealed investigators first thought McMullen was killed by an overdose of medication.

Watkins and two others in the home were questioned.

She revealed the 3-year-old and other children were given melatonin, jello water and Benadryl to behave and sleep.

It was halfway through questioning during a break where Watkins revealed a bizarre possible explanation for the death of her young grandson.

Watkins referred to a wrap method family friend Donella Trainor used. Officials say the toddler was covered from head to toe and wrapped in a blanket. The loose ends were tied behind the child’s back.

Watkins is facing manslaughter charges. She told detectives she saw her grandson wrapped up and asked Trainor to loosen the ties but didn’t stay in the room to see if she did it.

The 3-year-old was found unresponsive the following morning.

The trial will resume Thursday at 8:30 a.m.

The two other adults in the home at the time of the toddler’s death took plea deals. Trainor received 20 years in prison,
the other adult received 10 years.

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