Investigation continues into death of 4-year-old Carnel Chamberl - ABC 12 – WJRT – Flint, MI

Investigation continues into death of 4-year-old Carnel Chamberlain

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  • Investigation continues into death of 4-year-old Carnel ChamberlainMore>>

  • Police search for missing boy

    Police search for missing boy

    Wednesday, December 26 2012 4:31 PM EST2012-12-26 21:31:56 GMT
    (6/22/2012)- Police and volunteers are searching for a 4-year-old from the Saginaw Chippewa Indian Tribe who was reported missing by his family. Carnell Chamberlain was last seen around 9:30 Thursday
    The FBI has joined in the search for 4-year-old Carnell Chamberlain.
  • High-profile lawyer takes over assault case

    High-profile lawyer takes over assault case

    Monday, July 2 2012 12:50 PM EDT2012-07-02 16:50:38 GMT
    Mt. Pleasant (WJRT) - (6/30/12) - Anthony Bennett, 20, remains in jail on assault charges in connection to the death of his girlfriend's 4-year-old son, Carnel Chamberlain. He was charged Friday in federal
    Anthony Bennett, 20, remains in jail on an assault charge in connection to the death of his girlfriend's 4-year-old son, Carnel Chamberlain.
  • Carnel Chamberlain's biological father in prison for assault

    Carnel Chamberlain's biological father in prison for assault

    Friday, June 29 2012 6:22 PM EDT2012-06-29 22:22:58 GMT
    (06/29/12) - We've heard a lot about Anthony Bennett over the past several days, after investigators called him "a person of interest" in Carnel Chamberlain's disappearance. We know Bennett lived with
    We've heard a lot about Anthony Bennett over the past several days, after investigators called him "a person of interest" in Carnel Chamberlain's disappearance.
  • Court records show Carnel Chamberlain's life was troubled

    Court records show Carnel Chamberlain's life was troubled

    Friday, June 29 2012 5:25 PM EDT2012-06-29 21:25:35 GMT
    (06/29/12) - Court records obtained by ABC12 earlier this week from the Isabella County Probate Court show that Carnel's short life was a troubled one. The records show in February 2008, about a month
    Court records obtained by ABC12 earlier this week from the Isabella County Probate Court show that Carnel's short life was a troubled one.
  • Body of Carnel Chamberlain discovered under family's porch

    Body of Carnel Chamberlain discovered under family's porch

    Friday, June 29 2012 11:39 AM EDT2012-06-29 15:39:14 GMT
    (6/28/12) The body of a missing Isabella County boy is found under the porch of the family's home, according to family spokesman Kevin Chamberlain. The victim is 4 year old Carnel Chamberlain. He disappeared
    The body of a missing Isabella County boy is found under the porch of the family's home, according to family spokesman Kevin Chamberlain.  The victim is 4 year old Carnel Chamberlain.
  • Candlelight vigil to be held for Carnel Chamberlain

    Candlelight vigil to be held for Carnel Chamberlain

    Thursday, June 28 2012 7:12 PM EDT2012-06-28 23:12:01 GMT
    (06/28/12) - The mother of missing 4-year-old Carnel Chamberlain will appear on the Nancy Grace show Thursday. Several reports say Jamiee Chamberlain has passed two lie-detector tests. Crews have been
    The mother of missing 4-year-old Carnel Chamberlain will appear on the Nancy Grace show Thursday.
  • Search continues for missing Isabella County boy

    Search continues for missing Isabella County boy

    Wednesday, June 27 2012 5:46 PM EDT2012-06-27 21:46:12 GMT
    (06/27/12) - The search for a missing Isabella County boy is now in its seventh day. Carnel Chamberlain disappeared last Thursday from his home on the Saginaw Chippewa Indian Reservation. Wednesday,
    The search for a missing Isabella County boy is now in its seventh day.
  • Person of interest in missing Isabella County boy case

    Person of interest in missing Isabella County boy case

    Wednesday, June 27 2012 11:57 AM EDT2012-06-27 15:57:25 GMT
    (6/2612) We're getting a first look at the man police believe may be involved in the disappearance of a 4 year old Isabella County boy. Anthony Bennett is the boyfriend of that little boy's mother. Officers
    We're getting a first look at the man police believe may be involved in the disappearance of a 4-year-old Isabella County boy.
  • Mother of missing 4-year-old speaking out

    Mother of missing 4-year-old speaking out

    Monday, June 25 2012 6:38 PM EDT2012-06-25 22:38:38 GMT
    (06/25/12) - The mother of a 4-year-old boy who disappeared in Isabella County last week is speaking out for the first time. Carnel Chamberlain was last seen playing in a pool behind his mother's house
    The mother of a 4-year-old boy who disappeared in Isabella County last week is speaking out for the first time.
ISABELLA COUNTY (WJRT) -

(06/29/12) - Details are still unraveling, as the investigation continues into the death of 4 year-old Carnel Chamberlain.

After a week of searching for Carnel, his body was found under a porch at his house at the Chippewa Reservation just outside Mt. Pleasant.

Carnel disappeared while in the care of his mother's live-in boyfriend, Anthony Bennett, and crews had been searching ever since, trying to find him.

The FBI is involved in the investigation, and so far, federal officials and tribal police are being pretty close-lipped on details surrounding the case.

Family spokesman Kevin Chamberlain was there when they turned the home into a crime scene Thursday.

"I was able to witness three to four police cars turn to dozens of cars," Chamberlain said. "I watched them slowly close down the road. I watched the dogs search under the porch, then they began to tape around the house, they taped a wide perimeter, that's when my heart first sank, the first time I felt I was witnessing a crime scene."

Bennett has been charged - not with murder, but assault. He faces one count of "assault resulting in substantial bodily injury to a child under 16." The penalty for this charge is up to five years in prison.

ABC12 has obtained a copy of the criminal complaint charging Bennett. It alleges Carnel Chamberlain's mother, Jaimee Chamberlain, told police numerous times since the boy was reported missing, she knew Bennett had assaulted her son. And assaulted him more than once.

Jaimee told an FBI Special Agent, sometime late May or early June when she came home from work, Bennett sat her down and asked her to tell her she loved him.

And then, according to the complaint, she saw Carnel on a bed and with a bruised and swollen face. Carnel also had a cut on the inside of his lip.

A few days later, Jaimee saw a 6-8 inch long bruise along her son's ribcage. Bennett told her he backhanded the boy. Carnel told her Anthony [Bennett] punched him.

Jaimee saw Bennett pick Carnel up by his neck and drop him, pull him by his right foot about 15 feet and that the boy's buttocks were bruised as a result.

You can read that criminal complaint HERE.


A number of close family friends, and even the boy's maternal grandmother, attended the hearing in federal court.

A number of close family friends, and even the boy's maternal grandmother, attended the hearing in federal court.

His grandmother, Joane Chamberlain, was holding stuffed animals, rocking back and forth, mouthing "God give me strength."

After the hearing, Joane said she was there on behalf of the boy, adding, "I am Carnel."

"God speed to all and pray, pray for all the children," she said.

Prior to Bennett being formally charged, a number of close family friends waited outside the courthouse.

One woman was brought to tears when reading the details of the complaint charging Bennett with assault.

Investigators started taking a closer look at Bennett in the days after little Carnel disappeared. The 20 year old has been in trouble before. He served time for trying to assault a police officer.

Bennett remains in custody and will stay detained until a detention hearing is held next week. He was wearing an orange jail jumpsuit and said very little in court, other then to acknowledge he understood the charge.

Carnel's family has been holding out hope that the little boy would be found safe. Now, that hope has turned to grief and frustration.

They want to know what happened to the 4-year-old boy. They say they won't find closure until they get some answers.

The family says they don't want to assume anything, but without any solid information, they're left guessing.

Despite the tragedy that has unfolded, The Saginaw Chippewa Indian Tribal Council issued a statement Friday, thanking every person who volunteered, assisted, and-or supported the efforts to find Carnel.

They say, "your overwhelming support and concern are a true reflection of the nature of our community."

We're following this case closely and will bring you information as it becomes available. Stay with ABC12 for the developing details.

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