A 24-year-old man from El Paso, Texas, has been charged with capital murder after he told police he performed wrestling-style moves on an infant he was babysitting.
Marvin Rex Lake allegedly gripped 1-year-old Ahren DeHart like a football and dropped him on a futon frame that caused fatal injuries, according to a police affidavit viewed by KETK-TV.
DeHart died of intentional trauma/homicide last Friday, the El Paso County Medical Examiner’s Office confirmed.
Lake had been babysitting DeHart and two other children while their mothers went to work on April 12 after DeHart’s regular babysitter had called out sick.
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Man Charged with Capital Murder in Killing of Infant
Location: 500 Rubin…
While he was babysitting, Lake conducted two video calls with an unnamed witness. In the first call at 2 p.m., the witness said DeHart seemed to be in good health, though the baby was crying. When Lake called back at 10:50 p.m., Lake told the witness the baby was vomiting a red substance that he wasn’t sure was blood.
When the witness and DeHart’s mother arrived at the residence, the baby was unresponsive and having difficulty breathing. They called 911 and DeHart was taken to El Paso Children’s Hospital.
The 1-year-old succumbed to his injuries on Friday.
Lake reportedly drove himself to the El Paso Police Department headquarters prior to DeHart’s death and denied causing the infant’s injuries. When he was pressed with images, he reaffirmed that he did not know how the child got his injuries.
However, the affidavit said the suspect quickly changed his story and said he had performed several wrestling moves on the child who had slipped from his hand at one point and hit a futon frame.
“He also told police he grabbed the child like a football after getting upset and being unable to control his anger,” KETK reported.
Lake later returned to the police station on Thursday wanting to discuss reimbursement for damages to his futon.
Police explained that the futon’s frame had to be exposed in order to investigate his statement that the baby had hit the frame.
“I did not hurt his head, I only caused the internal injuries,” Lake said.
Heartbreaking: The family of Ahren DeHart says a last minute babysitter change resulted in the death of the 1-yr old. We’ll have more coming up tonight. https://t.co/wRlpnoWMLn pic.twitter.com/L3KivogKi7
— andra litton (@tornandra) April 20, 2021
Lake was arrested on Monday and his bond hearing will be held on Wednesday.
Coworkers of DeHart’s mother had set up a GoFundMe fundraiser to pay for the infant’s medical care costs. His mother is a health care worker at a local hospital and his father is a soldier stationed at Fort Bliss, Texas.
“Ahren was on life support and on Friday, at around 2:30 p.m. we were all there at the hospital and they decided to disconnect everything and let him pass away,” Lawrence DeHart, Ahren’s uncle, told KFOX-TV.
“Never in my life did I think I, my family, a 20-year-old newly married couple with almost an exact 1-year-old baby would have to live through this.”
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