Officials say the 2-year-old victim died last September from a devastating — and fatal — punch
A Florida woman accused of killing her 2-year-old son apparently believes the deceased toddler’s spirit appears to her. Police allege she told her boyfriend that the child’s ghost recently told her that everything will be okay with their criminal case.
PEOPLE confirms the allegations against Victoria Toth and her boyfriend, Johnathan Pursglove.
Toth, 25, and Pursglove, 26, are both charged with aggravated manslaughter of a child, stemming from the alleged torture and killing of her son, Jayce Martin.
Online court records confirm that investigators believe Pursglove delivered what would end up being a fatal blow to the boy last September.
According to the medical examiner who performed Jayce’s autopsy, the force from the powerful punch drove his spine through his intestines.
Jayce did not die until after he’d suffered for days without any medical treatment, prosecutors allege.
WFTV reports that at a hearing last week, investigators presented new evidence in court, suggesting Toth has told Pursglove she’s seen Jayce’s ghost.
“I talk to Jayce and he tells me that this is something that we are supposed to go through,” Toth is quoted as telling him in recorded conversations. “Hearing Jayce tell me that we’re going to get through it gives me something to hold onto.”
Investigators charge that Toth refused to take Jayce to the hospital, aware the boy’s injuries would stir up suspicion and leading to criminal charges against her boyfriend.
Toth has been released on bail, but PEOPLE was unable to reach her or her attorney for comment. Pursglove remains behind bars and his lawyer was also unavailable to speak to the charges.
At a court hearing in late February, a judge barred Toth from visiting Pursglove to talk about their criminal case, according to online minutes from that hearing. She was also instructed to avoid speaking about the case with her roommate, who is Pursglove’s sister.
• Want to keep up with the latest crime coverage? Click here to get breaking crime news, ongoing trial coverage and details of intriguing unsolved cases in the True Crime Newsletter.
In recent months, Toth has also allegedly said that the boy’s spirit follows her around her home, creating mischief and playing pranks, according to WFTV.
“He has visited us. We know that he’s visited us. We’ve seen the cardinals in the backyard. He’s played with the light switches here,” Toth said, referring to herself and Pursglove’s sister.
If you suspect child abuse, call the Childhelp National Child Abuse Hotline at 1-800-4-A-Child or 1-800-422-4453, or go to www.childhelp.org. All calls are toll-free and confidential. The hotline is available 24/7 in more than 170 languages.