Man, 31, indicted in boy's death Murder charge follows '911' call

August 20, 1993|By Alisa Samuels | Alisa Samuels,Staff Writer

A Howard County grand jury yesterday indicted a 31-year-old Wilde Lake man in the death of a 6-year-old boy who died Aug. 3 from head injuries while in the man's care.

Anthony Lee Crawford of the 5100 block of Brook Way was charged with murder, child abuse, and assault and battery in the death of Christopher Flye of Nashville, Tenn.

Crawford is being held without bond at the county detention center pending a trial date. His public defender, Carol Hanson, could not be reached for comment. Deputy State's Attorney Dwight Thompson declined to comment on the grand jury proceeding.

Mr. Crawford was arrested Aug. 4 and charged with killing the boy, who had been sent to stay with him the second week of June by the boy's mother, Zelda Flye of Nashville. Ms. Flye is a friend of Mr. Crawford's.

On the afternoon of Aug. 3, Mr. Crawford dialed "911" and sought an ambulance, saying that Christopher was having trouble breathing, according to charging documents.

Mr. Crawford told the dispatcher that Christopher was "just lying there, not doing anything," and he said that the boy had fallen and bruised himself in the tub two days before.

While talking with the dispatcher, Mr. Crawford said he was going into another room to check on Christopher. When he returned to the telephone, he reported that the boy wasn't breathing, court records said.

The dispatcher gave Mr. Crawford CPR instructions and dispatched an ambulance to the man's home in the Hannibal Grove Apartments in the Running Brook neighborhood.

Mr. Crawford met the medics outside. He was holding the boy, who was bruised and unconscious. Medics tried to revive the boy, who was taken to Howard County General Hospital and pronounced dead.

A state medical examiner ruled later that the boy's death was a homicide caused by blunt blows to the head, consistent with that of opened or closed hands. Injuries included wounds on the boy's buttocks, bruises on his legs, back, abdomen and lips, and there was hemorrhaging of the eyes. The medical examiner ruled out a fall or self-inflicted wounds as a cause of death.

Police said Mr. Crawford told them during questioning that he had beaten Christopher for consuming his own fecal matter July 31, three days before the boy died.

According to police, Mr. Crawford also said that he had given Christopher an inhaler for asthma about noon Aug. 3 because the boy was having trouble breathing. But the boy's mother told police that her son didn't use an inhaler.

Mr. Crawford's roommate, Kevin Scott, told police that the boy was fine when Mr. Scott left the apartment at about 3:30 p.m. Aug. 3. Mr. Scott also said that his roommate had admitted striking the boy in the past, police said.

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