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from left: Lucas Shayne Scronce & Jennifer Denise Clay
courtesy of Catawba Co. Sheriff's Office

Parents Charged with Murder in Death of 16-Month-Old Child

34-year-old Lucas Shayne Scronce and 41-year-old Jennifer Denise Clay, both from the same address on Short Road in Newton, have been arrested and charged with murder in connection with the death of their 16-month old child, Ivy Clay. Scronce and Clay are the child’s biological parents.

On February 7, Catawba County Sheriff’s Deputies responded to the suspects’ residence in reference to a report that a child was unresponsive. When Deputies arrived, they found Ivy Clay, deceased.

An investigation was launched. On February 9, Scronce was arrested and charged with trafficking in opium. That charge stemmed from narcotics that were found during the crime scene investigation at the Short Road in Newton residence.

An autopsy report released was on June 18. The cause of death was listed as toxic effects of fentanyl and the manner of death as homicide. Sheriff’s investigators believe that Ivy Clay ingested fentanyl in the family’s residence.

Scronce and Clay were placed in the Catawba County Detention Facility where they are being held without bond. Scronce was given a $300,000 secured bond on the trafficking charge. Both suspects will make first appearances in District Court on July 2 in Newton.