Tuesday, Jul 26, 2016
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Care provider charged with murder of Ohio group home resident who died of blunt force trauma

CINCINNATI — A care provider has been charged with murder in the death of a southwestern Ohio group home resident who had Down Syndrome and cerebral palsy.

Hamilton County Prosecutor Joseph Deters says Janice Cooper was indicted Thursday on charges of murder, voluntary manslaughter and felonious assault in the 2013 death of 52-year-old James Zito.

Court records don’t list an attorney for the 55-year-old Woodlawn woman, who worked at a group home in the Cincinnati suburb of Mount Healthy.

The county coroner ruled Zito’s death a homicide from blunt force trauma. The prosecutor didn’t specify what caused Zito’s injuries.

Deters says Zito functioned at the level of a 2-year-old child.

Cooper could be sentenced to life in prison if convicted on all the charges against her.

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