Manhattan infant may have been victim of prior abuse

MANHATTAN (KSNT) – An infant  whom prosecutors say was killed by a Ft. Riley soldier may have been the victim of previous abuse.

Kansas First News has obtained the Criminal Affidavit, or charging document, in the homicide case against 22 year old Alexander McConnell. McConnell was charged October 1st with First Degree Murder and abuse of a child in February, 2014 of a child identified only as “AKM” who was born in 2013.

Initially prosecutors said the five-month old infant died of injuries after McConnell shook the child on February 8, 2014. However, the charging document reveals a more gruesome story.

The prosecution says Riley County Police Officer initially responded to an emergency call for assistance from McConnell’s wife, Angela, at about 3:00 p.m. that day. She said she had fed the child and then left for “a matter of minutes” leaving the child in the care of her husband. When she returned she found the child was not breathing and “…Alexander in a frantic state…” because the child “…did not respond to resuscitation attempts…”.

The infant was initially taken to Mercy Regional Hospital in Manhattan, then later taken to Children’s Mercy Hospital in Kansas City, MO where AKM was pronounced dead at approximately 8:00 p.m..

During an autopsy, however, the medical examiner found the child had experienced substantial bleeding in the skull, had a broken neck, abrasions to its neck, head and chest, broken ribs, a lacerated spleen and several other severe injuries.

The report also stated the infant had nine healed rib fractures, and five recently fractured ribs which were estimated to happened two to seven days before the child died.

The report also concluded that none of the injuries would normally be associated with attempts at artificial resuscitation, as claimed by McConnell.

The report concludes “…the nature of the rib fractures, based (partially) on differing ages, locations and similar indicated abusive origins and concluded that the death of the infant was homicide.”

McConnell, who told a judge on October 1st that he will hire his own defense attorney, is due back in court on October 14th. His bond was put at $200,000.

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