Opening Statements Likely In Daycare Murder Trial

Tuesday, April 22nd 2008, 11:14 pm
By: News On 6

A murder trial gets underway on Wednesday.  A Tulsa daycare owner is charged with killing a two year old in her care.  The News On 6's Ashli Sims reports prosecutors say Vicki Chiles suffocated little Joshua Minton with masking tape.  And, social workers were on their way to shut down Chiles' daycare for other abuse allegations when they discovered the boy's lifeless body.

It's been eleven months, since two-year-old Joshua Minton was killed.  And, his family says that hasn't dulled the pain of the tragic loss.

"A sweet little boy. I mean he was precious.  He was just a good little guy," said Joshua's grandmother, Margie McDonald.

A little guy taken too soon.  A loss that lingers.

"We really miss him. We just do.  And, I don't think we'll ever stop," said Joshua's grandmother, Margie McDonald.

Eleven months ago, Joshua Minton was in daycare when the unthinkable happened.  The paramedics were called.  The two year old was unconscious and didn't have a heartbeat.  He died that same day.

"Ya know whenever people are old and they die, you expect that. But whenever they're taken from you when they're so small, it's just difficult," said Joshua's grandmother, Margie McDonald.

The woman charged with his care was also charged with his murder.

Vicki Chiles is heading to trial, accused of binding the toddler's hands and mouth with masking tape, suffocating him.  Those who know Chiles describe her as a kind and loving person, who enjoyed working with children.

"It's always a hurt feeling to see someone that you love face with circumstances that they can't change," said Chiles' friend, Gloria Drew.

Joshua's grandmother says two families were ruined that day last May.  And, she's not sure she can relive the details of Joshua's death, during the trial.

"It's just gonna be hard. I hope that I can stay in there and hear it. I don't know that I can," said Joshua's grandmother, Margie McDonald.

As hard as the next few days promise to be, McDonald says the trial will help close a chapter for her and her family.

"Soon it will be over with and we will be able to get on with our lives, ya know.  It's a part of the healing process," said Joshua's grandmother, Margie McDonald.

Thirteen people were selected for the jury on Tuesday. Opening statements are expected to begin on Wednesday morning.