According to the court documents, a 30-year-old foster father has been indicted for killing his 4-year-old foster son. Officials say that he already faced a count of aggravated child abuse, but the indictment on Thursday upgraded his second-degree murder charge to first-degree murder for the death of his 4-year-old foster son on April 21, from what investigators described as blunt force trauma.
Authorities say the 4-year-old “boy had multiple broken bones and a skull fracture.” A pediatrician testified and said that the 4-year-old boy, James Reese Jr., sustained physical abuse, and she says that this killed him. Dr. Poe said: “He was hit by a belt and thrown in a tub.”
James’ sister told authorities that she heard a loud banging from the bathroom next to her room. The sound was from the bathtub. She said she heard the 4-year-old boy screaming.
James’ mother, Karissa, said that she did not have custody of the boy or his three siblings after she suffered domestic violence. Authorities penalized her because it was difficult for her to get away from the man who abused her. The Department of Children and Families in Florida put the children with relatives and that ended with James dying brutally.
Prosecutors still have to decide if they will seek the death penalty. His mother wants the suspect, Alexander Charles Pino, to live his life out in prison instead of facing capital punishment. Alexander Charles Pino and Michelle Spiko (also charged with manslaughter and child neglect) have pleaded not guilty to charges.