No charges in container yard accident that killed boy

Corion Baptiste

After a lengthy investigation, North Charleston police have decided against filing criminal charges in connection with the July death of a 12-year-old boy at a Spruill Avenue container yard.

Capt. Scott Deckard said officials reached that conclusion after reviewing evidence and consulting with the boy's family and ConGlobal Industries, which operates the site. Neither wished to pursue any charges, he said.

Corion Baptiste's July 10 death occurred while he was playing with his younger brother and two friends inside the locked container yard. He fell off a top loader and was run over by a friend who was driving another of the massive, forklift-like machines, police said.

"It was a tragic accident," Deckard said. "(The other boy) didn't intend to run him over. It was just something that happened."

Teal Baptiste, Corion's mother, agreed. "An accident is an accident," she said. "We've already gone through enough."

The container yard where Corion died had a history of break-ins, including two incidents in which kids snuck in and vandalized equipment last year. Investigators had information linking Corion and his friends to those earlier incidents, but ConGlobal wasn't interested in pursuing charges against the youths, Deckard said.

The company also declined to seek charges against the boys for trespassing on July 10 and unlawfully using the machinery involved in Corion's death, Deckard said.

"The business has been very cooperative throughout the whole situation," he said. "It really came down to the business not wanting to put the families of these kids through any more trouble than they have already been through in this tragedy."

The ConGlobal Industries property, near Shipyard Creek Road, is surrounded by chain-link fence, barbed wire and "Beware of Dog" signs. But intruders found their way inside on at least five other occasions in the past year, police records show. It is unclear what, if any, security upgrades have been put in place since Corion's death.

The California-based shipping container and transport company did not respond to questions from The Post and Courier on Friday.

Teal Baptiste said her son's death has been the most painful experience of her life. She has turned to her faith to help her and Corion's brother pull through the ordeal. "I feel positive God is going to heal each and every one of us," she said.

Baptiste said she also prays for the other children involved and for all of Corion's friends, who continue to post heartfelt messages of grief on his Facebook page. "I'm a strong black woman, and I am going to be all right," she said. "But I pray for these kids. I just wish I could do more for them. They are just babies, and they are going to have live with this for the rest of their lives."

Reach Glenn Smith at 937-5556 or on Twitter at @glennsmith5.