Friday, April 9, 2004
© Copyright 2014
Clayton News Daily
By Ed Brock
Vartsama Vonxay tearfully stood in the driveway onto which her 4-year-old daughter fell from a second story window and explained what happened.
"She pushed the screen open and fell out," 25-year-old Vonxay said. "She was unconscious for five minutes."
Vonxay and her daughter Malia McRoberts live in Minnesota and were visiting relatives at a house on Barberry Drive near Lovejoy when the fall happened around 4:10 p.m. Thursday. Vonxay said McRoberts was in an upstairs room with four other children playing and there was no adult in the room.
"We were watching a movie," said McRoberts' cousin, 8-year-old Kristen Phanhmixay, who was in the room. "(McRoberts) sat on the white part of the window where you can put your hands and my other cousin told her to get off of it and she didn't and she fell."
A neighbor across the street also witnessed the fall, Clayton County Police Capt. Tim Robinson said.
After the fall a regular ambulance carried the girl from the subdivision off Tara Road to the Divine Faith Church on Tara Boulevard where a helicopter ambulance waited in the church parking lot. McRoberts was sedated and in a head brace when she was transferred onto the helicopter and flown to Grady Memorial Hospital in Atlanta. Robinson said the only thing he knew about the girl's condition was that she had a knot on the back of her head.
Across the parking lot members of the church stood waving their arms and clapping.
"We got the staff out here now just praying," said Johnny Sprapp of Jonesboro.
No charges are expected to be made in the case, Robinson said, but he urged people to use caution when leaving children alone in rooms with open windows covered only by a screen. "We had an incident very similar to this when I was on evening shift about three years ago," Robinson said. "It doesn't happen frequently but it does happen in just this way."