Mich. welfare workers tried to remove girl, 8, from mother before she allegedly stabbed child to death

GENERIC: Crime scene tape and knife, police, crime, stabbing

(CBS/AP) DETROIT - Semeria Greene, a 26-year-old Detroit mother of five, is scheduled to appear in court today on felony murder and first-degree child abuse charges in the stabbing death of her 8-year-old daughter, Tameria. 

Child welfare workers had known of problems with the family for at least two years and had unsuccessfully tried to take Greene's children into protective custody, Michigan Department of Human Services Director Maura Corrigan said.

"Most recently, DHS petitioned the court Nov. 28, unsuccessfully, to remove Tameria and her siblings from her mother's home," Corrigan said in a statement. She said the department "continued to provide court-ordered counseling services to the family as well as conducting in-home visits, the last of which occurred only two days before Tameria's death."

Neighbors called police to the Greene family's apartment just east of downtown in the early hours of Sunday morning. Officers arrived to discover Tameria Greene bleeding and unresponsive on the floor. She had been stabbed in the chest with a knife and was pronounced dead on arrival at a hospital. Semeria Greene was taken into custody.

Semeria Greene's four young sons have been turned over to Child Protective Services, police spokeswoman Sgt. Eren Stephens said.

A motive for the stabbing is not clear.

More on CrimesiderJanuary 2, 2013 - Detroit mother charged with murder, child abuse in stabbing death of 8-year-old daughter