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Upgraded charge filed in death of four-year-old Maleah Davis

August 5, 2019 

Derion Vence was charged Monday with a first-degree felony, punishable by up to life in prison, in the death of four-year-old Maleah Davis, Harris County District Attorney Kim Ogg announced Monday.

The charge of intentionally causing serious bodily injury to a child comes after Vence, 27, was previously charged with the crime of tampering with a corpse.

Maleah’s remains were recovered in Arkansas and brought back to Houston, where the Harris County Institute of Forensic Sciences completed an autopsy, recently finalized and forwarded to the Harris County District Attorney’s Office.

After a review of all of the evidence, including the autopsy results, prosecutors determined there was sufficient evidence to charge Vence with intentionally and knowingly causing seriously bodily injury to a child younger than 15 years of age.

The case was investigated by Houston Police.

The first-degree felony filed Monday carries a penalty of five to 99 years or life in prison.

Vence has previously been charged in connection with Maleah’s death with tampering with a corpse, a second-degree felony that carries a penalty of two to 20 years in prison. That charge remains in place.