By Rhonda Bletner News Staff Reporter & Samantha Scoles News Managing Editor
David Ray Scott, Jr.
Death of 4 year old being investigated August 13, 2012
Investigation continues in child’s death August 14, 2012
Two arrested for child endangering August 15, 2012
Mount Vernon couple arrested in death of 4-year-old August 16, 2012
Scott Charged with Murder of Kendrick Breece October 2, 2012
MOUNT VERNON — David Scott Jr. was indicted Monday by the grand jury on a murder charge for the death of 4-year-old Kendrick Breece. Breece’s death on Aug. 12 was ruled a homicide by Franklin County Coroner Dr. Jan M. Gorniak.Scott was also indicted for one count of felonious assault and four counts of endangering children.
Tabitha Raver, Breece’s mother, was indicted on four counts of endangering children.
The autopsy report, acquired by the News through a public records request, outlines a lengthy list of findings including the cause of death as “multiple blunt force injuries of the torso.”
Breece was taken by helicopter from Knox Community Hospital to Nationwide Children’s Hospital after Raver found him unresponsive on Aug. 12 at Scott’s home. She told 9-1-1 dispatchers he had fallen down the stairs the previous day.
“He wasn’t like this yesterday. He fell down twice; down our steps. He was OK yesterday,” she said.
She also told the dispatcher he was bruised from where he fell.
According to the autopsy report, Breece suffered “extensive” bruising all over his body, including patterned bruises on his back, a bruised diaphragm, bruises on his extremities, multiple bruises covering his entire chest and confluent contusions.
Knox County Coroner Dr. Jennifer Ogle told the News, “confluent contusions suggest multiple strikes occurred where the later literally bleed over into the former.”
The autopsy also showed fractured ribs and evidence of previous rib injuries, a ruptured liver and right adrenal gland, and internal bleeding.
Calls to Gorniak for clarification on medical terminology were not returned, but Ogle offered an explanation as to how investigations determine the difference between a case of abuse or an accident.
“In cases of child abuse, it is often the presentation of certain injuries that are unlikely to occur together, combined with a lack of appropriate explanation to support the injuries, that really distinguishes abuse from accidental injury,” Ogle said.
Gorniak determined Breece’s heart was bruised. When asked what kind of injury produces such a result, Ogle answered, “This is an injury that is more typically seen with a motor vehicle accident. When no motor vehicle accident has occurred, pediatric injuries to the chest of this nature are likely the result of a bicycle handlebar impact, pedestrian accident, being kicked, stomped on or hit with a fist.”
Raver and Scott were arrested on Aug. 21, and charged with one count each of endangering children. Both are currently in Knox County Jail.
Detective Craig Feeney, Mount Vernon Police Department is investigating the case and could not release information.
Director of Knox County Job and Family Services Matthew Kurtz could not release information regarding the case or any calls that may have been received by the department concerning the well-being of Breece or any of his siblings.
The News, however, did confirm that three of his siblings are with a foster family.
“Any time a child death happens in a community, it hurts us all,” stated Kurtz. “Please, if you know something about a situation we can do something about, we want to hear from you.”
He added, “If you know about the abuse or neglect of a child, the time to say something is now.
“With the pieces of information you hold, we can put pieces together. If everyone would bring those pieces in, we can put the pieces together and make some difference.”
A representative from the Delaware office of Jobs & Family Services told the News they are governed by confidentiality not to discuss any investigations that may or may not have taken place.