A Woodlawn man was convicted of second-degree murder and child abuse this week in the killing of his girlfriend's 3-year-old son, who died of head injuries in February 1998.
A Baltimore County jury deliberated for two hours Thursday before convicting Gary A. Deese, 31, of the murder of Kyle Gary Faust just a few weeks after the boy's birthday.
FOR THE RECORD - An article in Saturday's edition of The Sun incorrectly identified the Baltimore County neighborhood of Gary Deese, who was convicted of second-degree murder and child abuse. He is from Middle River. The Sun regrets the error.
Assistant State's Attorney John Cox said the boy's mother, Julie Faust, testified that she left the boy sleeping in Deese's care on the afternoon of Feb. 8, 1998.
When she arrived home, Deese told her "he hadn't heard a peep" out of the child. But when the mother checked on the boy, she found him dead.
A police report states that paramedics were called to the home in the 300 block of Farwind Drive shortly after 4 p.m. and found Faust attempting to revive her son with CPR. The boy was pronounced dead shortly afterward at Franklin Square Hospital.
An autopsy later showed "massive bruising on both sides of the head" that were caused within 48 hours of the boy's death, according to court documents.
The boy's mother told police that the boy suffered no injuries during the time she was with him before his death.
Prosecutors originally charged Deese with first-degree murder. With a conviction of second-degree murder, he faces up to 30 years in prison. Circuit Judge Dana M. Levitz has set sentencing for May 24.
Yesterday, Cox said the jury was not allowed to hear evidence of a previous injury, when the boy broke his leg a few weeks before his death, allegedly when he fell from a highchair while under Deese's care.
Deese's attorney, Mark Van Bavel, could not be reached for comment yesterday.
Pub Date: 5/01/99