Criminal charges filed against mother in pool drowning


A Killeen mother is in the Bell County jail, accused of abandoning/endangering her son’s life by leaving him alone in an apartment pool.

The child, 5-year-old Jonathan Dewitt Young, died in May. Witnesses pulled his body out of the deep end of the Bridgewater Retreat Apartments pool and performed CPR on May 27th, 2019. When police and EMS got there, they report not feeling a pulse or signs of breathing.

An ambulance took the child to Advent Health. He was later transferred to McLane’s Children’s Scott and White Hospital, where he died on May 31st. Autopsy results are still pending.

Investigators say Jonathan’s mother, Katie Rhea, admitted leaving him and his older brother playing with other children at the pool. She also told them the boys could not swim, and that she can’t either.

Witnesses told police they saw Rhea drinking alcohol and looking at her phone while her sons played in the pool.

Rhea faces a charge of Abandon/Endanger a Child Imminent Danger of Death or Bodily Injury. She’s being held on a $200,000 bond.

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