Church where 2-year-old boy found dead is not recognized by NCDHSS as daycare

EDENTON, NC (WAVY) – 10 On Your Side learns about the church operating at a home in Edenton where a 2-year-old boy with autism was found dead Friday.

CorNyeah Lindsey says a sheriff’s deputy found her son, Dinari Lindsey, upside down and unresponsive in a bucket outside the Open Arms Christian Ministry on Virginia Road near the High Street. He doesn’t know how he got there.

“I want justice for my son,” she said.

Lindsey says Dinari was in the care of Effie and Cliff Beaman, who run the church from their home.

10 On Your Side tries to find out more about the couple. In 2003, they “began to provide a home with a spiritual focus for orphaned children and young people,” according to their Facebook page. The sheriff’s office tells 10 On Your Side that the organization receives money from community funds to help continue its mission.

No charges have been filed in the case.

“I trusted them,” CorNyeah Lindsey said.

The nonprofit, which is registered with Effie Beaman at her address on Virginia Road, is not recognized by the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services as a child care center. Their nonprofit status is listed as “suspended.”

CorNyeah Lindsey told 10 On Your Side that she considered Effie and Cliff Beaman friends of the family. They had cared for the father of CorNyeah Lindsey’s other child when he was young. CorNyeah also stayed with the Beamans for a short time after giving birth to Dinari.

Last Friday, CorNyeah Lindsey dropped off her son before going to work.

She was home for a few hours before CorNyeah said she received a phone call telling her her son was in hospital. When she got there, she was greeted by a sheriff’s deputy.

“He told me [Dinari] I didn’t survive and I went crazy,” she said.

“[The sheriff’s deputy] told me he saw an older man at the end of the driveway who looked like “Oh fuck”. Have you seen me? Or did you not see me? He said it looked suspicious. So he went to the man and said, ‘What do you need?’ The man told her “I need help finding a 2 year old boy with autism”. The deputy said he knew at the time that the story wasn’t going to pile up.

Shortly after her discovery, CorNyeah Lindsey says she asked Effie Beaman what happened at the house.

“I asked them, ‘You all, I left Dinari in your care. How didn’t you miss it? So she said, ‘I was in the bathroom.’ How long does it take you to pee The detective said the playpen was right next to the bathroom Why didn’t she put it in the playpen She said she didn’t didn’t know,” Lindsey said.

The Chowan County Sheriff’s Office tells 10 On Your Side that they are continuing to investigate the matter and that the Department of Social Services is also investigating.

Jerry B. Hatch