- The Washington Times - Tuesday, February 12, 2002

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) A man and four women who shared a home and 13 children in an upscale San Francisco suburb face charges in the death of a toddler and the suspected mistreatment of their other children.
Winifred Wright, 45; Carol Bremner, 44; Mary Campbell, 37; Deirdre Wilson, 37, and Kali Polk-Matthews, 20, were arrested Friday for the November death of a 19-month-old baby. They were being held yesterday without bail awaiting arraignment.
DNA tests confirmed that Mr. Wright fathered all 13 children, said Marin County Sheriff's Detective Fred Marziano.
"We don't know exactly what their affiliation is together other than they are cohabiting and producing children," Detective Marziano said.
The 12 other children, ranging in age from 8 months to 16 years, were found malnourished at the Marinwood home, just north of San Francisco, officers said. A majority of them had rickets, a softening of bones caused by lack of vitamin D or calcium, Detective Marziano said.
Mr. Wright, Miss Bremner, Miss Campbell and Miss Wilson each face one count of second-degree murder and multiple counts of involuntary manslaughter and child endangerment. Miss Polk-Matthews faces one count of involuntary manslaughter and one count of child endangerment, Detective Marziano said.
Police began investigating the family in November after four women took a baby to Kaiser Hospital in San Rafael, Calif., where he died from "severe malnutrition and neglect," according to the Sheriff's Department. The other children were removed from the group's house and placed in foster care.
"When they told us how many children were there, I nearly fell out of my shoes," neighbor Connie Williams told the Marin Independent Journal.


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