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A woman who won first place on the Food Network’s “Worst Cooks In America” has been charged along with her husband with the death of a 3-year-old girl in South Carolina this week.
Ariel Robinson, 29, and her husband Jerry Robinson, 34, were charged with homicide by child abuse in the death of their adopted daughter on Tuesday.
On Jan. 14, police found an unresponsive child at the couple’s home in Simpsonville, South Carolina, WHNS reported. The little girl died as a result of several blunt force injuries, according to a medical examiner. She was identified as Victoria Smith, according to the Greenville station.
Ariel Robinson appeared on the latest season of the cable channel’s “Worst Cooks In America,” according to TMZ. The South Carolina mother won $25,000 after beating out a number of other amateur chefs on the show, which takes people with poor cooking skills through a culinary boot camp. She claimed the money would go towards her family and three adopted children, NBC affiliate WYFF reported.
“I just know that the Lord had his hands on me and he had a purpose for me to go on there,” Robinson said over the summer. “He knew we were going through this adoption, we really could use the money and he just let everything work out for our good.”
Ariel Robinson also worked as a middle school teacher and was a local comedian.
“She was hilarious, she was super sweet to everybody around her and she expressed a passion for working with children and working with just the community in general,” entertainment producer Justin Williams told WYFF.
The South Carolina Department of Social Services stated they’re aware of the girl’s death and are investigating further with law enforcement.
“When she entered a room, all eyes were on her, because she demanded it and she was a cutie,” Tiffany Huggins, a former foster mother for Victoria Smith, said of the toddler.
Huggins said Smith stayed with her family for roughly 10 months.
“She had the best personality, and I’m not just saying that cause I was her momma, but she was just our light,” she added. “She was a beautiful child, inside and out."
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