Kamille Mckinney 1

By WVUA 23 Reporter Lacey Beasley

Parents across the state who have children can use the Kamille McKinney tragedy as an important conversation starter, social workers say.

Kamille “Cupcake” McKinney, 3, was found dead Tuesday. She was abducted from a birthday party in Birmingham more than a week ago. Derick Irisha Brown, 29, and 39-year-old Patrick Devone Stallworth have been charged with kidnapping and capital murder in her death.

Codi Espy, a licensed clinical social worker, said parents should let their children lead the conversation if they have questions regarding the case.

If your child comes to you with questions, you should address them, Espy said. If they don’t, use your best judgement and decide if this is what your child needs to hear.

“Each case is individual and unique in its own way,” said Espy. “Each child is unique. Each family is unique, and so I would encourage the parent to meet the child where they are. If they bring it up, talk about it, discuss any topics they bring up about it.”

Residents across the state are heartbroken over McKinney’s loss. One grandparent even has a message he said he’d like to send to the family.

“It’s really terrible, but the only thing you can do is offer prayer to the parents and the grandparents of the child, and that’s all you can do,” said Mike Vaughn, grandfather of two.

As a parent, Espy said her heart goes out to McKinney’s family.

“It’s really hard to discuss,” said Espy. “You know that Kamille was a baby and she belonged to the communities around this area. We’ve got to do due diligence to look out for our children and to make sure that they’re safe.”

If you are a parent and looking to have this open conversation with your child, Espy said you can call Clarity Counseling at 205-523-4023, or any other counseling service.

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