GREENFIELD, Ind. (WISH) – A man is facing charges for the death of his three-month-old son.
Charles Jenkins, 21, appeared before a judge Thursday afternoon for his initial court hearing. He has been charged with aggravated battery, neglect of a dependent resulting in death, and possession of marijuana.
Hancock County prosecutor Brent Eaton said during a news conference on Thursday afternoon that Jenkins did not have a lawyer present during his initial appearance. Eaton said Jenkins entered a plea of not guilty.
According to police, they were called to a home in the 600 block of East Grant Street on Nov. 5. When officers arrived, they found the 3-month-old unconscious and unresponsive. Medics were able to revive the baby and he was transferred to Hancock Regional Hospital. The baby was then flown to Riley Hospital for Children at IU Health.
“I think any time for the police that you deal with a baby death it’s uncommon,” said Greenfield Police Chief John Jester. “You would prefer that it never happens. One is too many, but unfortunately, it happens.”
Doctors told police the child’s injuries were not accidental. The three-month-old baby died Saturday at Riley.
The Marion County Coroner’s Office said the baby died of blunt force trauma to the head and ruled the death a homicide.
“I had a miscarriage in 2014. I would have give birth to that baby. For someone to take a baby’s life or neglect that baby to where their life was taken it’s unacceptable to me. Unacceptable and unforgivable,” said neighbor Sheri Ashcraft.
Jenkins’ next court date is scheduled for February 2016.
Lauren Hontz, the baby’s mother has also been charged in the baby’s death. She faces a felony charge of Neglect of a Dependent as well as a misdemeanor charge of Possession of Marijuana.