21-month-old boy died of cardiac arrest after being allegedly beaten by mother’s boyfriend

Francis Akhalbey May 23, 2024
Edward Murray is accused of fatally beating his girlfriend's 21-month-old son -- Photo Credit: Hamilton County Sheriff's Office

A 23-year-old Ohio man is facing a slew of charges after he allegedly beat his girlfriend’s 21-month-old son to death. Per WLWT, authorities said the minor, identified as Kareem Keita, was found unresponsive in a Westwood home on May 2. He was subsequently taken to a hospital where he was pronounced dead on May 5.

The office of Hamilton County Prosecutor Melissa Powers in a statement said Edward Murray was indicted by a Hamilton County grand jury over Kareem’s death. He faces two counts of murder, one count of felonious assault, and one count of child endangering.

Authorities said that paramedics in the morning hours of May 2, 2024, responded to the residence of a woman identified as Aminata Keita after receiving a report of a non-responsive child.

The first responders who arrived at the address found the minor unresponsive and unable to breathe, the statement said. Kareem was subsequently transported to the Cincinnati Children’s Hospital ICU where he was pronounced dead three days later. 

Prosecutors said that upon further examination, it was determined Kareem suffered multiple injuries including cardiac arrest with severe diffuse hypoxic-ischemic injury, complex right parietal and occipital bone fractures, rib fracture, subdural hemorrhage, and grade 5 liver lacerations with hemoperitoneum. The other injuries the deceased minor suffered included diffuse retinal hemorrhages and brain swelling due to inner-cranial hemorrhaging.

“Child abuse expert physicians at Cincinnati Children’s determined these injuries could only have occurred from violent impacts against objects or from delivered blows,” the statement said. “After autopsy, the death was ruled a homicide.”

The Cincinnati Police upon launching an investigation determined Murray and Keita had been dating for about three months. Authorities said Murray was initially alone with Kareem outside the home playing on the evening he died.

Murray is said to have later returned indoors with Kareem and took the minor “directly to bed, skipping dinner claiming the child was tired.” Authorities said the suspect also spent “several minutes” alone with Kareem in the minor’s bedroom before “returning to smoke marijuana with Keita.”

The statement said neither Murray nor Keita checked on little Kareem for the rest of the night. Murray was again alone with Kareem the following morning when it was discovered the minor was not breathing and was unresponsive, the statement said.

But “Murray was unable to provide any alternate explanation for how” Kareem “could have been injured so severely,” the statement added.

“This case is both heartbreaking and sickening. I cannot imagine the amount of evil required to hurt an innocent child so severely. It is genuinely disturbing to think someone capable of doing this might walk among us,” Powers said.

“I want to thank both the Cincinnati Police Department and Cincinnati Children’s Hospital for their outstanding work investigating this matter; these cases are not easy. We are going to make sure that this killer goes behind bars for as long as possible.”

Prosecutors said Murray faces a maximum possible sentence of life in prison if found guilty.

Last Edited by:Mildred Europa Taylor Updated: May 23, 2024


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