Charges not likely in toddler's death

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LEWISTON — A Fairmount Street mother will likely not face charges, police said Monday, in the death of her 17-month-old daughter who was run over and killed Saturday.

A Lewiston police spokesman described the death of Tiannah Sevey as “an accident through and through.”

The case will be forwarded to the District Attorney’s Office for review, police Lt. David St. Pierre said.

Investigators said Taneisha Thomas, 27, of 50 Fairmount St., had been driving off on an errand when she ran over the toddler.

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Thomas was driving on a conditional license, according to court records, which required that she not consume any alcohol — a conditional license eliminates the legal blood-alcohol limit of 0.08. No limit had been set on when or where Thomas could drive.

She was convicted of OUI in 2013 after striking a parked car in front of her home on Fairmount Street in Lewiston. According to the accident report, she was driving a 2000 Subaru owned by Michael Sevey and strayed to the right of the road, striking the car. The impact forced the parked car into two other parked vehicles.

Her blood-alcohol level at the time of that crash was 0.27 percent, according to court records.

Thomas’ conditional license is set to expire Oct. 7. On Thursday, she is expected to attend a hearing at the Bureau of Motor Vehicles on an unrelated Aug. 13 arrest for driving while intoxicated in Auburn.

Four days after that charge was filed, Thomas’ license was suspended. However, the BMV later agreed to delay that suspension pending the hearing Thursday.

Police on Monday said Thomas has cooperated fully with the investigation. A blood test was underway to determine whether she was under the influence of drugs or alcohol at the time of the crash, a standard step in fatal motor-vehicle crashes.

Thomas and her family have declined to speak to reporters. In a GoFundMe page set up to help cover funeral expenses, the family described Tiannah and their grief at her loss.

“Sweet, delightful and beautiful, 17-month-old Tiannah Rose Sevey died in a tragic accident on Saturday, September 23rd,” according to the GoFundMe page. “There are no words to describe the heartache her family is going through. She was the youngest daughter of Mike Sevey and Taneisha Thomas and sister to Jenayah, Natisha, Na’Kaiyah.”

According to police, Thomas was backing out of a space near her home at Pleasant View Acres at about 5 p.m. Saturday when she struck her daughter, who had been attending her 10-year-old sister’s birthday party.

Police who responded to the scene attempted to revive the child. Lifesaving measures continued as the child was being taken to a hospital, but she died at Central Maine Medical Center.

Throughout the day Sunday, neighbors, family members and members of the community built a memorial to 17-month-old Tiannah Sevey just outside her home at Pleasant View Acres in Lewiston. The child was struck and killed Saturday evening in the parking lot there.

A GoFundMe page has been set up to help the family of Tiannah Rose Sevey to cover funeral expenses. The page can be found here: gofundme.com/tiannahs-funeral-expenses

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