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Family of woman convicted of murdering stepson: 'It's a terrible injustice'

Patricia Brown's family says she is innocent

Family of woman convicted of murdering stepson: 'It's a terrible injustice'

INDIO, Calif. - The family of a woman who was found guilty of second-degree murder in the death of her 2-year-old stepson is calling it "a terrible injustice."

Patricia Brown was found guilty in the Jan. 16 2003, death of her husband's son, Deetrick. The verdict came down just before 4 p.m Thursday.

"My kids have been destroyed over this. My family has been destroyed over this. It's a terrible injustice," Derrick Brown said.

Brown and four of the five children he had with Patricia were interviewed in front of the Larson Justice Center in Indio. Just hours before, after being found guilty, Patricia Brown collapsed in the courtroom and was rushed to JFK Memorial Hospital where she was treated and is now okay.

"This is a total injustice, there is no justice here. We are black and we didn't get a fair shake," Derrick Brown said.

Woman found guilty of 2nd degree murder for toddler's death

Originally charges were brought up against Patricia and Derrick Brown back in 2003 but the judge ruled that there wasn't enough evidence to proceed. Charges were refiled a decade later.

Just a few weeks ago, Derrick Brown was acquitted, ending his 13-year legal battle. Since he is no longer part of the case, he can speak out in defense of his wife.

"Justice did not come through. My wife of almost 25 years has been a faithful and loyal wife who raised five of our beautiful children as well as my other son. She's never hurt or harm or even thought about hurting anyone," Derrick Brown said.

Derrick and Patricia Brown obtained custody of Deetrick Brown after custody was taken away from Deetrick's biological mother. The boy was sent to foster care before the Brown's obtained custody.

Derrick Brown said Deetrick suffered from medical problems that included seizures which doctors didn't prescribe medication for because Deetrick was being tested for other ailments. Derrick Brown believes these medical issues and previous abuse at the hands of his biological mother are the reasons Deetrick died.

"I had another son who was only four months older than Deetrick. That's how we knew that something was wrong because one was thriving. They were eating the same meals and trying to do the same things and Deetrick just couldn't do it," Derrick Brown said.

"I was with him his final seizure and for them to say that he had blunt force trauma seconds before he died, I was with him, my mom was nowhere near him," said Jasmine Nyx, Patricia and Derrick Brown's daughter. "My mom loved Deetrick just like her own."

The Browns also believe the jury was not fair because of their race.

"We had an all-white jury, and and all-white jury of 175 people polled, and only four blacks came in and out of those four, three of them we knew. You tell me this is justice of peers of my own, no," Derrick Brown said.

Prosecutors with the Riverside County District Attorney's Office say they won't be giving statements to media until after sentencing.

The Brown family plans on appealing the case. Sentencing is scheduled for Sept. 22. The maximum sentence is 25 years to life in prison.

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