The mother of missing 4-year-old Houston girl Maleah Davis faced tough criticism on Monday from protesters who accused her of failing to protect her daughter.
Brittany Bowens attended the court hearing of her ex-fiance, Derion Vence, who’s been charged in connection with Maleah’s disappearance, Houston’s ABC13 reported. Monday’s hearing was rescheduled, however.
Police charged Vence, 26, with tampering with evidence, namely a corpse, after traces of the young girl’s blood were found in the family’s apartment. Bowen’s initially defended her ex but levied bombshell accusations against him last Friday, saying she had suspected that Vence had molested Maleah.
Relatives of the girl’s biological father, Craig Davis, were also present for Monday’s hearing and pressed Bowens for answers.
“You said you had suspicions that he was molesting her, why did you stay?” said Tamisha Mendoza, a cousin of Davis. “Why didn’t you remove yourself from that situation? Furthermore, why didn’t you remove her, even if you didn’t want to leave that situation?”
“You could have sent her to her dad,” Mendoza argued. “You could’ve sent her to her grandparents. You could’ve have sent her anywhere except for leaving her there.”
Bowens was out of town for a funeral when her daughter went missing. Vence was the last person seen with Maleah.
The criticism didn’t stop there, however, as the grieving mother was met with shouts from angry protesters accusing her of what they saw as her failure to keep her daughter safe.
The crowd chanted, “Justice for Maleah! Justice for Maleah!” while others held signs demanding the same, ABC13 reported. As Bowens stepped onto elevator to leave, someone yelled “murderer!” just before the doors closed. “Where is she?” another asked, referring to the missing girl.
On May 3, Vence claimed Maleah, 4, was abducted during an alleged carjacking in the Houston suburb of Sugar Land. He told police he was ambushed and knocked unconscious by three Latino men who made off with his car — and his young stepdaughter.
Vence said he awoke on the side of the road several hours later with his toddler son, who was also present during the alleged incident. Malaeh was gone, however.
Vence was treated for his injuries at a local hospital, where he reported the little girl missing. He was later named a person of interest in the case after investigators say he changed his story “several times.”
Bowens remained mum after Monday’s hearing and allowed community activist Quanell X to speak on her behalf. Quanell X insists that Vence killed little Maleah.
“We have a great idea what he did with Maleah’s body after he killed her in their apartment,” he said.
The little girl still hasn’t been found, and authorities don’t believe she’s alive.
Watch more in the video below.