Details of toddler’s death come out in Greenville court

Michael Deananthony Latimer Jr. is charged with inflict great bodily injury upon a child and murder, homicide by child abuse.

The coroner says 26 month old Destiny Denise Jackson died from a non-accidental head injury on Jan 11.

The child had bleeding on the brain and if she did survive would be brain-damaged, according to the coroner.

The injury happened at an apartment at Westgate Manor on January 4.

Deputies say Latimer was the mom’s live-in boyfriend and was caring for the toddler when it happened

Investigators say Destiny wasn’t feeling well and was being fussy.

Latimer said she wasn’t eating food like he wanted her to and that he was forcing her to eat chicken nuggets.

They say that tore the area above her lip.

Investigators say they asked Latimer how she got the head injury.

His stories were all over the place, according to investigators.

They said he told them she had fallen weeks before, fell off a bed while he was outside smoking.

The investigator thought that was odd because the bed was a mattress and box spring on the floor.

They say he also said her sister pushed her off the bed and kids sat on the girl’s head.

Investigator left the room to give Latimer time to think.

When he returned the investigator said that Latimer said he would tell him what really happened.

They say he told them he was rough housing with them, flying them around like helicopters or airplanes.

He says he tossed Destiny on to the bed and she bumped her head on the wall.

He told them it was a hard hit but she was crying.

He says he picked her up underneath her shoulders, held her in front him and shook her side to side trying to get her to stop crying.

She eventually stopped crying and smiled at him.

He says she went into shallow breathing, gave her some Tylenol and put ice on her head and thought she needed to take a nap.

He says he left her there until the mother came home.

Investigators say when the mom came home she thought the child was sleeping which she thought it was odd for a 2-year-old because it was around 5 p.m.

But they says she also knew that she had been diagnosed with a stomach virus the day before she thought she wasn’t feeling well.

They say the mom checked and she had a slight fever. She gave her Tylenol and let her rest some more.

They say as the night progressed her condition worsened and she started having seizures. She called 911 and was taken to the hospital.

Investigators say cell phone records show Latimer did a search for brain trauma and brain injuries around 5 p.m. that day.

Investigators say they went to the same links and they showed what the injuries were and how to care for them.

In court, Latimer’s attorney says that the mother caused the injuries, not Latimer.

They asked for the charges to be dismissed and that the mother had just as much access to cause the injuries at Latimer.

The case will now go to trial.

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