McDONOUGH, GA -- Two foster parents charged with murder after a 2-year-old girl in their care died last year pleaded not guilty in a Henry County courtroom Tuesday morning.
A grand jury indicted Joseph and Jennifer Rosenbaum on charges of malice murder, two counts of felony murder, first-degree cruelty to children and aggravated battery in September.
The Rosenbaums' attorney told 11Alive News in September the couple did not kill their foster child, 2-year-old Laila Marie Daniel.
One year ago, Jennifer Rosenbaum called 911, saying that Laila was choking on a piece of chicken.
PHOTOS: Laila Marie Daniel
An autopsy disputed choking as a cause of Laila's death, and revealed she had suffered several injuries -- including broken bones. The report showed she had suffered a transected pancreas on the day she died.
Defense attorney Corrine Mull said Laila's pancreas could have been injured during attempts by Jennifer and EMTs to revive her. Other injuries, she said, could have occurred in other foster homes.
Mull insisted the case revealed the failures of state Division of Family and Children Services (DFCS) workers during the months they were supposed to be supervising Laila's foster care, but who did not intervene in time to save her.
DFCS records showed Laila spent time in three foster homes before she died. Other reports indicate the DFCS case worker assigned to Laila's care repeatedly "failed to adequately assess impending and present dangers," missing "multiple critical red flags" in relation to her case. At least two DFCS employees were dismissed for violations in connection with the case.
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