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Missouri man pleads guilty in death of girlfriend's toddler

8:24 PM, Aug 22, 2013   |    comments
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HUNTSVILLE, Mo. (AP) - A central Missouri man will serve 15 years in prison for the death of his girlfriend's toddler son last November.

KMIZ-TV reports 23-year-old Joseph Laswell was in Randolph County Circuit Court for a pretrial conference Thursday but instead pleaded guilty to second-degree murder and child abuse. Under a plea agreement, he was sentenced to 15 years on each charge but will serve the terms concurrently.

Laswell, of Clark, initially told police he had been caring for 18-month-old Jayden Bradds when the toddler tripped over a toy and hit his head on a table.

But in court Thursday, Laswell admitted getting angry when the boy wouldn't stop crying after his sister pushed him to the floor. Laswell said he pushed Jayden down again and threw a cellphone at his head.


Information from: KMIZ-TV,

(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

The Associated Press

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