SalemNews.com, Salem, MA

Nation/World

November 13, 2013

Father pleads guilty to murder of infant son

(Continued)

Medina told police that Junior was face-down in his crib, and he pushed on the baby’s back to quiet him so he could sleep. DeJesus had left earlier for work, and Medina said he’d previously used this tactic to quiet the baby.

Several hours later, a grandparent, who arrived at the apartment to baby sit, found the infant was not breathing and called DeJesus, who in turn dialed 911.

MacDougall said Medina and his young family were suffering from “extreme financial distress.” The couple was struggling with two young children and fought the previous night over parenting styles, she said.

The next morning, while the infant lay on his belly, MacDougall said Medina pushed on the boy’s buttocks “essentially forcing his face into the pillow.”

An autopsy revealed a bruise on the infant’s upper left arm, bruising on two areas of his scalp caused by blunt force trauma and multiple rib fractures of different ages, MacDougall said.

Junior was also suffering from “pronounced pneumonia,” along with a form of meningitis commonly found with pneumonia.

The combination of the rib fractures and pneumonia did not allow the baby’s lungs to expand and contract normally, resulting in asphyxiation when Junior was pushed into the pillow, she said.

“This is a heartbreaking murder of a defenseless infant,” MacDougall said.

After MacDougall’s explanation of the facts of case, Welch turned to Medina, who was on the witness stand, and asked, “Did you do these things to your young child?”

“Yes, your honor,” Medina answered quietly. DeJesus burst into tears.

Both MacDougall and Medina’s defense attorney Ronald Ranta said Medina showed remorse after his son died. Medina declined when Welch asked him if he wanted to address the court yesterday.

Medina also pleaded guilty to assault and battery on a child under age 14 causing bodily injury and was sentenced to 10 to 11 years in jail, to be served concurrently with the life sentence. He was also sentenced to two years in jail, to be served concurrently, after pleading guilty to another assault and battery charge.

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