Dad Who Threw His 4-Year-Old Off a Cliff to Avoid Child Support Gets What He Deserves

rancho pales verdesA heartbroken mother is finally seeing justice after her ex-lover was convicted for throwing their four-year-old daughter off a sea cliff, all because he didn't want to pay child support. Sarah Key-Marer cried tears of relief in the courtroom after hearing the ruling. She had waited 15 long years for this day.


When Cameron Brown threw his daughter, Lauren, to her death he claimed to police that she'd run and tripped over the 120-foot cliff at Rancho Palos Verdes, California. At the time, he and Key-Marer were embroiled in a bitter dispute over child custody payment. 

Brown's story didn't hold up when the jury considered the girl's injuries. What's more, a witness claimed to have heard the father saying that "it would be nice to get rid of Lauren" in order to get out of paying $1000 a month to support her. Los Angeles Deputy District Attorney Craig Hum says Brown also wanted to hurt his Key-Marer. "He hated Sarah so much that he was willing to go to these lengths to get back at her."

In fact, when Key-Marer had become pregnant Brown had wanted her to get an abortion and tried to have her deported (she is English).

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In 2006 and 2009 juries had decided the death was a crime but had not been able to agree on the charge. This time, after six weeks of testimony and less than a day of deliberation, the jury found Brown guilty of first-degree murder. He faces a mandatory sentence of life in prison without parole.

It takes my breath away to think that anyone would deliberately kill a helpless child -- his own flesh and blood -- out of spite. Brown will have the rest of his life to contemplate his actions. But the kind of dark heart that tries to erase a past "indiscretion" like this is probably the kind that will only regret having met Key-Marer in the first place. At least he won't get the chance to do something like this ever again.



Image © Richard Cummins/Corbis

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