Father Accused of Brutally Beating Infant Son to Death Allegedly Told Police He Was 'Stressed'

Edrick Lamar Davis, 25, allegedly told police he kneed his 6-week-old because he was fussy and crying but that it was "unintentional," an affidavit states

<p>Brevard County Sheriff

Brevard County Sheriff's Office

Edrick Lamar Davis

A Florida father is accused of fatally beating his infant son, allegedly telling police he did so because he was "stressed" by the baby's crying.

Edrick Lamar Davis, 25, of Melbourne, is charged with first-degree murder of a child and aggravated child abuse, according to an arrest warrant affidavit reviewed by PEOPLE.

Just after 11 a.m. on June 10, Melbourne police officers and Melbourne Fire Department paramedics responded to a 911 call about an infant who was found unresponsive and not breathing, the affidavit states.

The 6-week-old was taken to a local hospital where he was pronounced dead despite resuscitation efforts, the document states.

The detective who went to the hospital saw a minor bruise on the infant’s left shoulder and scratches on his face, but no other outward signs of physical abuse, the affidavit alleges.

The detective spoke with Davis, who said the baby was healthy and had no known health issues that could explain his death, the affidavit says.

That morning, he told the detective he gave the baby formula and laid the baby down on his right side when he fell asleep, according to the affidavit.

When he got out of the shower 15 to 20 minutes later, he said he saw his son “unresponsive” with “formula coming out of his nose” and not breathing, according to the affidavit.

He said he placed the baby on the floor and performed CPR as instructed by the 911 dispatcher until paramedics arrived.

On June 11, the Brevard County Medical Examiner’s Office performed an autopsy and ruled the baby’s death a homicide caused by multiple blunt force trauma, the affidavit says. The medical examiner noted injuries that were “believed to have occurred in a forceful and intentional manner just before his death,” the affidavit says.

The medical examiner also found signs of past fractures and physical abuse that were in the process of healing, the affidavit alleges.

In a second interview with authorities on June 11, Davis repeated what he had told detectives earlier about what allegedly happened the morning his son died, the affidavit says.

When the detective told Davis that the autopsy revealed a severe brain injury as the cause of the baby’s death, Davis initially said he had no idea how that injury occurred.

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“Upon further questioning, he admitted responsibility” for the baby’s death, the affidavit alleges.

“He described ‘accidentally’ striking (the baby’s) head with his knee while trying to prevent him from falling out of his arms,” and demonstrated that on a doll, the affidavit says.

On the morning of June 10, at about 10:45 a.m., while the baby’s mother was in the shower, the “defendant admitted” that “he forcefully struck the back of (the baby’s) head with his knee at least two times,” the affidavit says.

He said the baby “was fussy and crying, causing him to become stressed,” the affidavit alleges.

Claiming his actions were “unintentional,” Davis “admitted that his actions alone caused (the baby’s) death,” the affidavit says.

He wrote in an apology letter that he allegedly struck the baby because “he lost control due to stress and was not in his right mind,” the affidavit says.

It is unclear whether Davis has retained an attorney who can speak on his behalf.

He remains held in the Brevard County Jail without bond. He is scheduled to return to court in July.

If you suspect child abuse, call the Childhelp National Child Abuse Hotline at 1-800-4-A-Child or 1-800-422-4453, or go to www.childhelp.org. All calls are toll-free and confidential. The hotline is available 24/7 in more than 170 languages.

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