BIRMINGHAM, Ala. – A young boy accused of beating a toddler to death who was left in his care is officially being charged with juvenile delinquency.
“This is one of the most heartbreaking investigations that I have seen in over 30 years of my law enforcement career,” said Chief A.C. Roper, with the Birmingham Police Department.
Authorities say 1-year-old Kelci Devine Lewis was found unresponsive in her crib on Oct. 12.
After being rushed to the hospital, she was pronounced dead.
Investigator say Kelci died from blunt force trauma to the head and internal injuries.
According to AL.com, officials say Kelci was left alone in a home with five other children ranging in age from 2-years-old to 8-years-old. The victim’s mother, 26-year-old Katerra Lewis, allegedly went to a nightclub with a friend, leaving the children home alone.
“It is believed that while the mother and friend were at the club, the 8-year-old viciously attacked the 1-year-old because the 1-year-old would not stop crying,” said Lt. Sean Edwards, with the Birmingham Police Department. “The 1-year-old suffered from severe head trauma as well as major internal organ damage which ultimately led to her death.”
The 8-year-old, who is not being identified, has been accused of juvenile delinquency.
According to the district attorney’s office, Alabama law does not allow minors to be charged with a criminal offense.
Originally, it was reported that the boy was charged with murder in juvenile court.
Katerra Lewis was also charged with manslaughter.