Dad Off the Hook in Children's Dirt-Pit Deaths
Judge dismisses case against Jordan Keely Arwood
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 6, 2013 11:08 AM CST
This undated photo made available by Jordan Arwood shows him with his daughter Chloe Jade Arwood.   (AP Photo/Jordan Arwood)

(Newser) – The North Carolina man charged in the deaths of his daughter and her cousin when they were buried in a pit he was digging will not be punished for the tragic accident. A judge yesterday dismissed the case against Jordan Keely Arwood, siding with his defense team that the April 7 incident, in which a 20-foot wall of dirt collapsed and buried Chloe Arwood, 6, and James Caldwell, 7, was not the result of a criminal act. Arwood told police he was digging the 20- by 24-foot hole in preparation for building a house; his mother was helping him that day, and she testified that the children had been safely playing on a swing set moments before the accident and no one realized they had gone into the pit until they heard screams.