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Woman charged with drowning grandson, 5

Associated Press / January 6, 2010

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TALLAHASSEE, Fla. - A 71-year-old German woman drowned her 5-year-old grandson in a bathtub while they were vacationing in the Florida panhandle because she didn’t want to see the boy grow up in a divorced home, authorities said yesterday.

The grandmother, Marianne Bordt, tried to commit suicide after the drowning Monday by wading into the Gulf of Mexico wearing heavy clothes, authorities said. Bordt, of Nufringen, Germany, was charged with first-degree murder in the death of Camden Hiers at a condominium on St. George Island, about 60 miles southwest of Tallahassee.

A public defender was appointed for Bordt, but no one answered at the office after business hours.

The boy’s parents had joint custody of Camden after they divorced in 2006, but he lived mostly with his mother in the Atlanta suburb of Roswell, Ga. His father, David Hiers, lives nearby and is on his way to Florida, according to his attorney.

“I don’t think anybody ever knows that a grandparent could be capable of something like this,’’ said Hiers’s attorney J. Thomas Salata. “David Hiers is extremely distraught and overwhelmed with grief over this incident.’’