Mother's boyfriend accused of burning, beating toddler to death
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- Police say a two-year-old Shively boy was killed by his mother's boyfriend. Neighbors say they didn't know who was living next door.
Alonzo Thomas Jr. has a light in his eyes and joy in his face in the profile picture from his mother's Facebook page.
It is a stark contrast to the sadness that now surrounds this child's death.
"For him to beat that baby like that, it's wrong, I'm sorry y'all," said neighbor Deonna Martin.
Shively Police charged the mother's live-in boyfriend and babysitter, 25-year-old Lajuan Hayes, with Alonzo's murder.
Officers say just before 8 p.m. Tuesday, something went horribly wrong in the apartment off Appleton Lane near Dixie Highway.
"Mr. Hayes was the only one home with the child during the period of time when the injuries were likely to have occurred," said Shively Police Sgt. Josh Myers.
We're told paramedics first came to this complex thinking Alonzo was having a seizure. Police say when they arrived they found a much different story with the wounds on his body.
"Numerous second, possibly third degree burns throughout the torso of the child, multiple areas of the body with blunt force trauma -- head, torso and extremities as well," Sgt. Myers said.
The two-year-old was rushed to Kosair Children's Hospital and died in surgery.
"The child's mother was at work when the incident was likely to have occurred," Sgt. Myers said.
"I never seen the mother. She's always working," said Martin, whose children often played with Alonzo when that family moved in across the courtyard about four months ago.
"Did you ever see any problems in the home?" asked WDRB's Gilbert Corsey.
"Me never, to me personally he seemed like a good dad. I don't know if it was really his kids or not but he seemed like a good dad. Like I said he'd walk them to the store. He'd bring them outside," Martin replied.
"Mr. Hayes although was cooperative and did give a statement. He wasn't real specific on exactly what had occurred," Sgt. Myers explained.
Since 2008, Hayes has been arrested for terroristic threatening, harassment and shoplifting -- and convicted of robbery.
Martin says she didn't know who was living next door.
"But I would never think that dude was capable of doing something like that because it didn't seem like he was capable. I'm sorry but that is it, you all, for real," she said.
Hayes remains in Metro Corrections and is set to be arraigned Thursday.
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