Texas Mom Accused of Murdering Baby Daughter Blamed Death on 3-Year-Old Son
A doctor said "there is no way a 3-year-old could have caused this amount of damage" to the skull of 2-month-old Acelyn Lailani Rogers
At first, the mom tried to blame the baby’s fatal injuries on her 3-year-old son.
The 2-month old victim, Acelyn Lailani Rogers, lived for just over four hours after the mother, 25-year-old Halle Marie Murry, showed up with the unresponsive girl at the hospital in Fort Worth, Texas, around 1:20 p.m. on January 14, claiming the boy had dropped his little sister.
“The victim’s mother had been providing information her 3-year-old son caused the injury to the victim,” an arrest warrant obtained by PEOPLE states.
A doctor at Cook Children’s Hospital later described the baby’s head injury to police as “one of the worst skull fractures he has ever seen,” adding, “there is no way a 3-year-old could have caused this amount of damage,” according to that warrant.
The medical examiner ruled the baby’s cause of death as traumatic head injuries, and the manner as homicide.
On Wednesday, after documenting alleged inconsistencies in the mother’s account, police arrested Murry on a charge of capital murder.
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Murry said she and the two children were home alone on the day her daughter died, and that she had fallen asleep for about 20 minutes around 12:30 p.m. with the baby on her chest, but woke up “after not feeling her there anymore,” say police.
Murry told officers she found Acelyn in a bedroom, with her older brother Andrew standing over her.
The mom said the boy was “too rough with Acelyn and always trying to pick her up,” say police. She further described her son “hitting Acelyn with objects, slapping, biting, kicking and spitting.”
She specifically said that while she hadn’t seen Andrew hurt his sister that day, she noticed bruises on the baby’s forehead consistent with a metal fidget spinner next to the bed, and suggested that the boy “hurt her when he tried to get her up on the bed because he doesn’t know how to hold her head up,” according to the arrest warrant.
A subsequent forensic interview with the boy showed him to be “both loving and aggressive” with a play doll consistent with the size and weight of his sister, but he “did not demonstrate the dexterity or force to cause the extensive head injuries to Acelyn,” states the warrant.
A drug screening later revealed that both the mother and 3-year-old tested positive for cocaine. Murry had said — and then stated otherwise — that she had been awake for three days prior to discovering her daughter unresponsive, and that she had been “needing and asking for help to deal with [redacted] and nobody helping her,” say police.
Murry is being held in Tarrant County jail. An attorney who might speak on her behalf was not immediately identified in jail records.