15-year Term Given Annapolis Man In Death Of 2-year-old

December 15, 2009|By Andrea F. Siegel | Andrea F. Siegel,andrea.siegel@baltsun.com

A 37-year-old Annapolis man was sentenced Monday to 15 years in prison for the second-degree murder of his wife's nephew after the toddler died of head injuries while the man was baby-sitting him.

"I don't know what sentence would adequately match this offense, but 15 years doesn't do it," Anne Arundel County Circuit Judge J. Michael Wachs said, as he accepted the agreement prosecutors made with the defense because of witness and proof problems with their case.

Sentencing guidelines for William Warren Boyd, formerly of Annapolis, went up to 30 years for the Dec. 12, 2008, death of 2-year-old Cyrus Besche. But Assistant State's Attorney Pamela Alban said she feared that a jury might be sympathetic to Boyd and that the mental health of the victim's aunt, a bipolar schizophrenic, had deteriorated, creating doubts about her on the witness stand.

FOR THE RECORD - In an article Tuesday about an Anne Arundel County court case, the date 2-year-old Cyrus Besche died was incorrect. The boy died Dec. 10, 2008. The Sun regrets the errors.

The victim's family wept as Alban recounted events leading to Cyrus' death. In his fourth statement to police, Boyd said he whirled the child around and let go so Cyrus would land on a sofa, repeating it up to 20 times. But during the last few times, Cyrus didn't get up. The final time he was flung, his head smacked the floor, and he seemed to be asleep. Alban said Boyd's behavior showed "a certain amount of maliciousness."

In a statement read to the judge, Crystal Ferron, Cyrus' mother, wrote that "I hate knowing that life just goes on every single day but my baby boy's life does not. I just feel so empty all the time, when Cyrus' life was taken my life was taken too."

Boyd admitted that Anne Arundel County prosecutors had evidence to convict him of second-degree murder but did not plead guilty. Assistant Public Defender Karl Gordon said Boyd was drunk as he baby-sat while his wife and her sister went shopping, and had inadvertently gotten an electric shock that day. Gordon said defense experts would have testified that Cyrus' injury could have been accidental.

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