Click on some of the photos to
Timeline of Events
Mariah, age 2 1/2, and Ariana, 18 months,
play on a beanbag at the home of their aunt and uncle in March 1999.
Valerie McDaniel holds her niece Ariana
Swinson during her first birthday party Sept. 19, 1998.
Violet Paling, left, and 18-month-old Ariana
pose for a picture with Valerie McDaniel at Valerie's 39th birthday
party in March 1999. Violet, the mother of Valerie and Linda Paling,
hoped Linda would get her children back. Five days after this photo
was taken, Ariana, Noah and Mariah were returned to Linda and their
father, Ed Swinson, in Port Huron.
Ariana Swinson, 17 months old in February
1999, was happy and healthy. Her aunt Valerie McDaniel says Ariana loved
to take baths. About a month after this photo was taken, Ariana and
her siblings were taken from her aunt and uncle and placed back into
their parents' care.
Ariana was "probably the most battered
human being I had ever seen. I've never seen anything even close to
that," said Dr. Geoffrey Mills, Port Huron Hospital Physician.
the use of the word "some" in the first sentence of this photo of findings
from Ariana's autopsy...obviously indicating that they found MORE than
what was listed.
Linda's sisters Valerie McDaniel, left, and Debbie Ackerman
tend to Ariana's grave site in Kimball Township in August.
Cheryl Duff, a friend of the McDaniels,
consoles 15-year-old Amanda McDaniel. Amanda, Ariana's cousin, often
baby-sat for her.
St. Clair County Assistant Prosecutor Jean Sturtridge
was on the verge of tears after hearing Valerie McDaniel's statement
at the sentencing. Sturtridge said Ed's and Linda's abuse and excuses
"made her stomach turn."
Ed Swinson breaks down at his sentencing Sept. 25 in
Linda Paling and Ed Swinson, escorted
to the St. Clair County Jail in September, pleaded guilty Sept. 6 to
Ariana's murder. They were sentenced to 30 to 60 years in prison.
Ed Swinson and Linda Paling listen
during their sentencing Sept. 25 as relatives talk about the toll Ariana's
murder took on them. Ed said he didn't learn anything from a court-ordered
six-week anger management course in June 1998.