A two-year-boy has died as a result of extensive injuries allegedly inflicted by his mother’s boyfriend during potty training.
James ‘JJ’ Sieger Jr. was rushed to hospital in Layton, Utah, over the weekend and died in the early hours of Monday with his biological father at his bedside.
At a press conference on Monday, a tearful James Sieger Snr. described his son’s death as the ‘worst and most difficult day of my life’.
Police say JJ had his own feces smeared on his face, before he was purposely dropped on a bathroom floor and was then stepped on.
When the boy’s mother, Jasmine Bridgeman, 23, and her boyfriend, Joshua Schoenenberger, 34, brought the toddler to the hospital on Saturday morning he was unresponsive and covered in bruises.
JJ was quickly placed on life support and the police were notified about his injuries.
‘Certainly the Injuries looked like the result of abuse and the biological mother and her boyfriend were the ones who brought the child in and their stories were not matching up or making sense with what we were seeing,’ Layton police Lt. Travis Lyman told FOX13.
Bridgeman and Schoenenberger were both arrested and booked into the Davis County Jail for investigation of felony child abuse, reports KSL.
An attorney is now working on additional charges for the pair following the boy’s death.
Police say Bridgeman eventually told them Schoenenberger had become upset with James after he had messed his diaper.
Schoenenberger ‘smeared the poop from the diaper in (the boy’s) face,’ states the police report.
Schoenenberger told detectives that he was in the bathroom holding JJ by the waist, talking to him face-to-face about potty training, when the boy urinated on him and defecated in the tub.
He reacted by dropping the boy ‘outside of the tub, onto the tile floor, from eye level,’ and then stepping on the boy’s stomach ‘out of frustration with how (he) treats his home,’ said the report.
Bridgeman told police that Schoenenberger asked her to lie to investigators about what happened as they drove to the hospital, police wrote.
He then allegedly lied himself about what happened, blaming it on the mother.
‘Jennifer has knowingly allowed (her son) to live in an abusive environment without taking any steps to protect him from the abuse,’ Layton police wrote.
Siegers, who lives in Georgia, is married Bridgeman. His family says she ran off four months ago and the family had only recently discovered that she was in Utah.
Sieger had been working to try to get son back and suspected abuse was occurring.
The couple also have a 5-month-old daughter who has been placed into care.
Police say Bridgeman has no serious prior convictions but this isn’t Schoenenberger’s first child abuse charge. Police say in 2010 there was an incident involving a neighbor’s child in Layton.
He has also admitted to using heroin regularly.
Source: Daily Mail