The police chief described the allegations as "horrific"

Steven Meek IICredit: Christiansburg Police Department
Credit: Christiansburg Police Department

A Virginia 2-year-old boy died Sunday, two days after his mother’s boyfriend called 911 claiming he was unresponsive after falling.

But a preliminary forensic examination showed Stephen Meek II died from extreme blunt force trauma to the head, and investigators determined his injuries were didn’t come from a fall. Now, Christiansburg police allege the boyfriend murdered him and that he’d been sexually abused by both the boyfriend and his mother in what Police Chief Mark Sisson described as a “horrific” case at a Friday press conference.

McKenzie Kyle Hellman, 25, is charged with murder and other counts including aggravated sexual battery, inanimate sexual penetration and possession of child pornography, according to police.

The child’s mother, Kayla Nicole Thomas, 25, is charged with multiple crimes including forcible sodomy and production of child pornography involving a child younger than 15.

Sisson became emotional during the press conference while announcing the allegations. He added there is another alleged child victim in the case who is not being named.

McKenzie Hellman, Kayla Nicole Thomas
| Credit: Montgomery County Sheriff's Office; Western Virginia Regional Jail

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“Children in this community are cherished,” Sisson said at the press conference. “They are individuals without voices. … It is our job to be their voice.”

According to Sisson, the sex crimes charges against the couple came after police seized numerous electronic devices.

Sissons said Thomas shared custody of Stephen with the boy’s father — and that police have heard she is pregnant.

The Roanoke Times reports both suspects were being without bond Friday in the Western Virginia Regional Jail. They are scheduled for Feb. 28 preliminary hearings in the county’s Juvenile and Domestic Relations Court.

It was not immediately clear if either suspect has entered a plea or retained an attorney.