Sunday, Nov 23, 2014

Police: Largo man charged with beating child to death

Published:   |   Updated: May 6, 2013 at 06:43 AM

A child brought to a St. Petersburg hospital with brain damage died Sunday and a man has been charged with beating her to death, according to the Largo Police Department.

Joel Adrian Cruz, 27, faces first-degree murder charges, police said.

About 3 a.m. Sunday, detectives were called to All Children's Hospital in St. Petersburg on a report of a 2-year-old child, Ananhie Fernandez, in critical condition.

Karina Mora, the child’s mother, and Cruz, her live-in boyfriend brought the child to the hospital, where she was found to be suffering from severe injuries to the chest and had no independent brain function, police said.

Mora and Cruz, of 5130 Foxbridge Circle, Apt. 87, were interviewed and Cruz admitted throwing the child against a chair and a wall, police said.

The child died later in the day Sunday.

Cruz was arrested and is being held in the Pinellas County Jail.

The investigation continues.

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