This was supposed to be Kairissa XingJing Mark's forever home.
On March 29, the 4-year-old's new family brought her home from China to a big brick house in a cozy Mt. Juliet subdivision that is the picture of the American Dream. There was a big fenced-in yard for her to play in and pretty pink curtains in the upstairs bedroom window. In the window next to the door, someone had taped a child's coloring of a religious scene, the Good Shepherd guarding his flock.
But three months after her adoption, Kairissa is dead, her adoptive family is shattered and the international adoption community is reeling from the news of yet another horror story out of Tennessee.
Kairissa's mother, Dr. Deborah Wen Yee Mark, a pediatrician, stands accused of beating her to death. Last week, a Wilson County grand jury indicted Mark on one count of first-degree murder and eight counts of child abuse. It also indicted her husband, Steven Joshua Mark, a stay-at-home dad, on multiple counts of aggravated child abuse, child abuse, failure to protect and of being an accessory after the fact.
2 weeks ago