Camp director, owner indicted following 5-year-old's drowning death



A camp owner and director are facing criminal charges in the death of a boy at summer camp.

Benjamin Hosch drowned in a small pond after wandering away from a summer camp outing at Cochran Mill Park last summer.

Benjamin's parents are still very much grieving the death of their son and wanted the camp owner and director held accountable.

On Tuesday, a grand jury agreed.

“He deserves justice. He was a kind boy and we feel robbed,” Benjamin's mother Ayisat Idris-Hosch said.

After nearly five hours of deliberations, a grand jury indicted camp director Terri Clark on one count of involuntary manslaughter and one count of reckless conduct.

Camp owner Maribeth Wansley was indicted on one count of operating an early childhood learning center without a license.

The state said the camp was not licensed to operate and ordered it to close shortly after Benjamin's death. A search of Wansley's LinkedIn page also listed her as the camp's executive director.

“We are not happy, but we do feel like the process is working,” said Benjamin’s father, Benjamin Hosch II.

Last July, the 5-year-old was at Camp Cricket in the Cochran Mill Nature Center in south Fulton County.

He disappeared after lunch, after 13 campers were allowed to play in shallow water. When it was time to leave the park, Benjamin was nowhere to be found.

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Thirty minutes later, Benjamin was found unresponsive in a creek. He was taken to a hospital, in cardiac arrest, but later died. While he was missing, no one alerted his parents.

Fulton County District Attorney Paul Howard said employees knew Benjamin had a tendency to wander off, yet did nothing to improve the supervision.

“That led to the child striking his head and falling into the water there even after the child laying unconscious and drowning. It took an unreasonable time just to locate the child,” Howard said.

Through all the pain and sadness, the family said there is some happiness. While Benjamin will never be replaced, his mother shared the news that their family is expanding.

"We are excited to extend our family. It is a saddened joy; if anyone would have met our oldest son, he always wanted more brothers and sisters,” Idris-Hosch said.

If found guilty, Clark's charge of involuntary manslaughter carries a sentence of one to 10 years in prison.

This case will now be assigned a judge.

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