The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

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June 29, 2012

Charges sought in death of child in Newton County

SENECA, Mo. — The Newton County Sheriff’s Department arrested the boyfriend of a 22-month-old boy’s mother Friday on suspicion of having caused the child’s death.

Sheriff Ken Copeland said the mother called 911 about 5 p.m. Thursday and reported that her son was not breathing.

Emergency medical personnel responded to their home on Holly Road north of Seneca near the Oklahoma state line and found the child unresponsive and apparently deceased. The sheriff said he was taken to Freeman Hospital West in Joplin, where he was pronounced dead.

An autopsy conducted Friday in Springfield led to the arrest of the 20-year-old boyfriend of the mother on suspicion of murder, Copeland said.

He said the arrest was made about 6 p.m. Friday.

“We’ve requested charges, and charges should be filed either later tonight (Friday) or in the morning,” Copeland said.

The names of the boyfriend, mother and child were being withheld Friday night. The sheriff declined to discuss the cause of the child’s death or any other preliminary findings of the autopsy prior to charges being field.


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