Maliyah's body was dumped in storm drain, mom's boyfriend told police

Wednesday, October 7, 2020
Maliyah Bass' mom and her boyfriend charged in girl's death
Months after the 2-year-old was found dead in Brays Bayou, police have arrested and charged her mother and her mom's boyfriend. The video breaks down how police determined charges.

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- Weeks after 2-year-old Maliyah Bass was found dead in Brays Bayou, police have arrested and charged her mother and her mother's boyfriend.

Maliyah was initially at the center of an Amber Alert after her mother said she left the toddler alone on the playground outside of their apartment for a couple of minutes while she cooked breakfast the morning of Aug. 22.

Tuesday, Houston police announced they arrested Sahara Ervin, 20, and Travion Thompson, 21, for their alleged roles in the girl's death. They are charged with injury to a child and tampering with evidence, namely Maliyah's body, according to Houston police.

Sahara Ervin and Travion Thompson are in custody and charged with injury to a child & tampering with evidence in the death of Ervin's daughter, Maliyah Bass

RELATED: Body of Maliyah Bass formally identified by medical examiner

Overnight, a judge set bond for Maliyah's mother and her boyfriend. Thompson's bonds total $150,000 and Ervin's total $175,000.

Thompson appeared in court overnight Tuesday, but Ervin did not, citing medical issues. Both are expected back in court Wednesday and Thursday.

WATCH: Travion Thompson, 21, appeared in court overnight. He is charged with injury to a child and tampering with evidence, with bond set at $150,000.

Two months ago, they spoke to reporters and cried in front of cameras.

"Everyone looking stupid and looking for the baby when they knew what happened to the baby," said Stella, a neighbor, who was pleased to learn of the arrests.

According to court records, the autopsy showed Maliyah had a broken left forearm and extensive superficial blunt force trauma in the form of looped-pattern bruising all over her body. The medical examiner believes she was beaten with either an extension cord-like object or a hanger-like object.

The police investigation found Maliyah was last seen alive on security video at 12:40 a.m. on Aug. 20.

WATCH: Grandmother of missing 2-year-old Houston girl begs for her safe return

Watch the video above to hear the grandmother of Maliyah "Tootie" Bass describe where the 2-year-old was last seen.

Court records say Thompson confessed and pointed a finger at the mother. He told police she beat her daughter with a hair brush on Aug. 20 because she was crying and would not go to sleep. Records say they then put her in a broom closet, naked. When they woke up on Aug. 21, Maliyah was dead.

Thompson told police they disposed of her body in a storm drain at their apartment complex on Aug. 22, the same day they reported her missing. She was found in Brays Bayou on Aug. 23.

Much of the search centered around their complex on Wilcrest in southwest Houston. Neighbors have taken the case personally in Maliyah's name.

"That little girl didn't deserve this. She was a sweetheart," added Stella. "They were supposed to be her protectors."

RELATED: Family of missing 2-year-old meets with Quanell X, seeks answers

RELATED: Foul play 'highly suspected' after body believed to be missing 2-year-old found in bayou

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