ODESSA, Texas (KMID/KPEJ)- On Tuesday, two parents were arrested after their infant son was found dead in their apartment. Kameron Gammage, 23, has been charged with Injury to a Child Causing Serious Injury; he was also arrested on a warrant out of Andrews County on one count of Sexual Assault of a Child. Leyla Pierson, 18, has been charged with Injury to a Child/Criminal Negligence.
Around 12:52 p.m. on July 12, officers with the Odessa Police Department as well as Odessa Fire Rescue responded to Brady Station Apartments at 4421 E 52nd Street after the baby was found unresponsive. Now an affidavit has revealed new details into the investigation.
According to the affidavit, the baby was dead by the time helped arrived. Investigators said the baby boy had “heavy” bruising and swelling to the left side of his face and head. There were also multiple bruises along the top of the baby’s head.
Investigators spoke with Gammage first, and he reportedly said he woke up around noon on Tuesday to Pierson telling him the baby wasn’t breathing. He said he called 911 and started CPR and waited for help to arrive. When questioned about the bruising, Gammage claimed his son hit the hard inner part of his crib. Officers noted Gammage was unemotional and “seemed to lack care” throughout the interview.
In fact, officers noted in the affidavit the couple’s apartment was disheveled when they arrived, with animal feces throughout. The parents admitted to trying to clean the apartment before police arrived, around the same time they were reportedly performing CPR on their baby.
In an interview with the mother, Pierson told police she last fed her baby around five that morning and later discovered the baby wasn’t breathing. She said Gammage didn’t seem to care when she told him their baby was in trouble. She said he instead seemed “apologetic” and said he hoped she wasn’t mad at him. The young mother then admitted Gammage has “anger issues” and had recently strangled several dogs to death.
The couple was then taken to the police station for further questioning. During that interview, Gammage admitted to having “extreme anger issues”; he even admitted to killing two dogs. He said he had been under a lot of stress, especially while dealing with a crying baby.
He told investigators he often smokes marijuana to help deal with his anger and said on July 9, he smoked marijuana and later tried to play with the crying infant. He said he threw the baby into the air several times and “accidently” dropped him on about the fourth toss. He claimed the baby hit the floor “hard” and that the bruising and swelling soon followed. He claimed he didn’t tell the baby’s mother what happened because he was afraid of getting in trouble.
Pierson told investigators she noticed the bruising on July 9 but didn’t seek medical care for the child. She claimed Gammage said the baby hit his head on the crib and left it at that. She claimed following the July 9th incident, the baby became “more fussy” than usual and she thought the fussiness was from teething.
Both parents remained in custody as of Wednesday morning; their bond had not yet been set. The investigation is ongoing.