Mother Kills 2-Year-Old; Sentenced To Life

Photo courtesy: SBSD

By Marissa Mitchell

San Bernardino, California – Last week a mother who physically assaulted her 2-year-old with what would become fatal injuries was sentenced to 25 years to life in state prison.

On May 12, Hesperian mother Jaimi Roberts, 24, was sentenced for the crime she had been found guilty for on March 22 of this year: involuntary manslaughter and assault on a child causing death. Her son, Grant Dunn Jr., died of complications due to the injuries she inflicted upon him. Superior Court Judge Eric M. Nakata in Victorville imposed the term.

During the trial, jurors witnessed Roberts’ video-recorded statement, in which she admitted she “dropped elbows” on her son’s abdomen. After autopsy, it was found these stomach blows had ruptured his intestines and brought about his death two days later. She also re-enacted striking the child with her elbow in the video.

Judge Nakata stated, “For you to sit here and tell me this was an accident is outrageous.” Roberts had claimed both in court and during interview that she was “play-wrestling” with her son, and that his death was an “accident.” She claimed no prior child abuse and insisted that they “play-wrestled” on April 22, 2014.

The prosecutor Deputy District Attorney David Foy indicated to the court that Roberts did not procure medical care for the 2-year-old for two days after the injury, even though the toddler was vomiting, could not stand, and felt cold sensations in his legs.

Quoting a probation report, Judge Nakata said: “The crime involved great bodily harm and/or other acts disclosing a high degree of cruelty, viciousness and callousness in that the victim suffered for an extended period of time after the defendant struck him, and made a conscious decision to avoid medical attention for him until after he lost consciousness.”

Paramedics had gone into the Hesperia home of Roberts (then age 21) in the afternoon after the child had lost consciousness. The child was then hospitalized, but died later that afternoon from sepsis in the bloodstream – what occurs once internal organs have been ruptured.

Roberts will serve her sentence in state prison.