Clark County teen’s starvation death ruled homicide

Crime

Karreon Franks died November 27, 2020

VANCOUVER, Wash. (KOIN) — A 15-year-old boy in Vancouver died of starvation and neglect and his death was ruled a homicide, the Clark County Medical Examiner’s Office said.

Karreon Franks was 5-feet-3 and weighed 61 pounds when he died November 27, 2020, documents show. The CDC said 61 pounds is the average weight of a 9-year-old.

On that day, his mother Felicia Adams drove him to the hospital when she allegedly told doctors Karreon became unresponsive when she was bathing him. He was pronounced dead 14 minutes after arriving at the hospital.

Documents obtained by KOIN 6 News show the autopsy done by the Clark County Medical Examiner showed abnormal bone and hair growth as well as abdominal lesions most likely caused by starvation. The ME also said Karreon had hardly any range of motion in his arms and legs, again likely because of starvation.

Just one week before his death, CPS opened an investigation into a report that Felicia Adams and her husband Jesse Franks restricted food to punish their children, documents revealed.

The search warrant affidavit also stated Karreon went to school before the pandemic. His teachers told a detective he was very motivated by food and would sometimes eat so much he would throw up.

His death was announced by the medical examiner in February, but at that time the manner and cause of death had not been determined.

To date, no arrests have been made.

Vancouver police declined a request for an interview with KOIN 6 News and did not say why no one has been arrested. They did say the investigation is ongoing.

Officials with the Washington Child Protective Services also declined to comment.

Jesse Groves lives across the street from the couple. He told KOIN 6 News he speaks to them regulary but did not learn about Karreon’s death until earlier in the day.

“I talked to them almost everyday out here in the driveway but they never mentioned anything to us,” Groves said. “We live so close and we have kids. I don’t understand how that could ever happen.”

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