Serenity Deal died from a head injury “due to assault” and she had seven recent fractured ribs, as well as scrapes and bruises all over her head and small body, an autopsy found.
Serenity is the 5-year-old girl whose death June 4 sparked a public outcry against the Oklahoma Department of Human Services.
Her 21-page autopsy report was released to the public Wednesday. Her cause of death is listed as “acute closed head injury due to assault.”
The state's new chief medical examiner, Dr. Eric Pfeifer, reported she had “multiple additional blunt force injuries.” Her manner of death is listed as a homicide.
He specifically listed 30 recent injuries in the report.
Pfeifer reported he found no evidence of recent trauma to the girl's genitals.
Serenity died while with her father in Oklahoma City. She began living with him full time in May at the recommendation of DHS workers.
The girl was placed with her father, Sean Devon Brooks, even though she was injured twice in January during overnight visits with him. The second time, she returned to a foster home with black eyes and a swollen and bruised face, records show.
DHS workers have said they believed the injuries in January were accidental. Serenity and her father both claimed he dropped her the second time she was hurt.
DHS was involved because Serenity's mother had been accused of molesting a boy. Brooks had not known he was her father until she was 3.
Brooks, 31, now is charged with first-degree murder. He denied hurting her, telling police she fell while in the shower at his apartment. Police reported he “had no explanation for the bruising all over victim.” Police described one bruise as looking like a handprint.
DHS officials have said child-welfare workers failed to follow policies and procedures in Serenity's case. The agency put four workers on administrative leave after her death. One then resigned. Another committed suicide by shooting himself in the head.
DHS is in the process of firing the other two workers.
The medical examiner's office earlier revealed Serenity died from a head injury and had other injuries. The autopsy report provides details of the extent of those injuries.
Those details include two cuts to the back of her head, extensive raised bruising of her forehead and bruising and abrasions elsewhere on her face. She had a contusion to her right upper lip.
She had four fractured right ribs and three fractured left ribs. She had bruises on her abdomen, right arm, left hand, left flank, right flank, back, bottom and legs. She had scrapes on her chin, chest, left arm, left flank, left shoulder, thigh and back.
Her brain was severely swollen.