Coroner says inquest served its purpose - WCIV-TV | ABC News 4 - Charleston News, Sports, Weather

Coroner says inquest served its purpose

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Ginny Hughes' home (Rebecca Lamb/WCIV) Ginny Hughes' home (Rebecca Lamb/WCIV)

By Lia Sestric
lsestric@abcnews4.com

NORTH CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCIV) – The Charleston County Coroner says the inquest into a 2-year-old girl's death proved to be valuable.

Three months after Ginny Hughes' death, a Charleston County coroner's jury on Friday found Ginny's babysitter responsible for her death.

"In Ginny's case there was obviously many areas of concern in terms of safety and well being," Coroner Rae Wooten said. "The jury heard that and came up with a verdict they believed to be true."

Wooten asked for the inquest into Ginny's death to figure out how a perfectly normal girl who only suffered from a genetic birth defect would suddenly develop seizures and suffer retinal hemorrhages and a stroke.

Witnesses couldn't provide any other explanation for Ginny's death, other than someone inflicting obstruction to her airways.

Alicia Stepp, just 17 years old at the time, lived at the North Charleston mobile home with Ginny's mom and two other children.

At the hearing, details of the family living circumstances surfaces and reasons why the children went into foster care.

"Those situations we need to spend the time and energy on whatever it takes to truly understand their circumstances surrounding their deaths," Wooten said. "Not how they die but how that came to happen."

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