Source: Google News
Sara Jean Green / The Seattle Times
A 4-year-old Seattle boy suffered massive head injuries and languished for hours before he died Sunday.
King County prosecutors have since charged his mother and her boyfriend with second-degree murder, accusing them of withholding emergency medical care from the child.
Cynthia Enyeart, 23, and Junior Asghedom, 20, didn’t call 911 until the boy was unconscious and unresponsive, the charges say, and he had already died by the time medics arrived at his mother’s Queen Anne apartment.
The King County Medical Examiner’s Office identified the boy as Kennan Ford, but his cause and manner of death are still pending. He is referred to in charging papers by his initials, KF.
“As of this writing, what is known is that both defendants were inconsistent and lied to investigators about the nature, extent and origin of KF’s massive head injuries,” King County Senior Deputy Prosecutor Celia Lee wrote in charging papers.
Both attributed his injuries to a recent fall but then blamed each other for assaulting the boy, Lee wrote. It was clear KF had significant injuries and needed emergency medical treatment, say the charges, noting “KF had stopped eating and his eyes were blackened and swollen shut.”
“However, rather than taking this obviously injured child to the hospital or calling 911 while he was still conscious, they kept KF inside the apartment, leaving him to languish and ultimately die,” Lee wrote.
Enyeart and Asghedom were arrested and remain jailed in lieu of $500,000 bail, but prosecutors plan to seek bail increases based on new information — including witness statements and a forensic exam of Enyeart’s cellphone — that’s come to light since their first court appearances, according to charging papers.
Seattle Fire Department paramedics were called to an apartment in the 100 block of West Olympic Place at 10:30 p.m. Sunday and declared the boy deceased, the charges say. Medics contacted Seattle police because the boy’s injuries were inconsistent with the mother’s explanation that he slipped and hit his head getting out of the bathtub, according to the charges.
Enyeart and Asghedom were taken to police headquarters to be interviewed, where Enyeart was seen typing on her phone. Detectives later learned she had been posting messages on Facebook, including one indicating she planned to tell police her son “fell at my house,” according to the charges.
During her interview, Enyeart changed her story several times, claimed she had not physically harmed her child, and accused Asghedom of striking KF in the face two weeks earlier at a Lakewood motel, the charges say.
Child Protective Services received four or five complaints about Enyeart, “all of which indicated physical abuse by the mother and all indicated unexplained bruising,” a detective wrote in charging papers.
Police say Asghedom initially told detectives the boy fell getting out of the bathtub, but then accused Enyeart of punching her son and slamming his face and head into an armrest several times Saturday, according to the charges. The next day, Asghedom told detectives Enyeart became angry at KF and struck the boy’s head against the bathroom sink, “knocking him out cold,” say the charges.
An autopsy indicated the boy suffered “massive blunt force trauma” to his head and had bruises all over his body that were inconsistent with “normal, rambunctious, 4-year-old play,” the charges say.
One woman who spoke with police said she had seen KF with bruises on his face and head multiple times, including on his birthday in late November, according to the charges. She also reported witnessing Enyeart punching and knocking him to the ground, often, because the boy — who appeared to be afraid of his mother — said he wanted to be with his grandparents, according to the charges.
The woman showed police a photo posted to social media on Sunday, showing Asghedom “casually holding what appeared to be a very damaged KF,” who was either asleep or unconscious at the time, the charges say.