Father jailed in baby death
$1M bond in February death of 4-month-old
Brent Allen Benefield, address listed in the 4300 block of McNeil Avenue, was charged with injury to a child-serious bodily injury/death, according to an arrest warrant affidavit. Benefield's bond on the charge was set at $1 million.
Wichita County Jail records show Benefield was taken into custody about 7:30 p.m. Tuesday. Wichita Falls police believe Benefield caused abusive head trauma that resulted in the death of his son Lucas in February.
Lucas was pronounced brain-dead and died four days later at Cook Children's Hospital in Fort Worth.
Police were originally called to Benefield's home after he called 911 to report his son was not breathing and was coughing up blood. American Medical Response arrived and found the child unresponsive. They started CPR, then transported the child to United Regional Health Care Systems. The baby was later flown to Cook Children's Hospital.
Investigators spoke with Benefield, who told them he was the primary caregiver of Lucas during the day while his wife worked. He said his son was acting normal that day, and he described changing his wet diaper. He said the child was lying on the bed when he went limp and became unresponsive, coughing up blood. Benefield said he immediately called 911, but he was unable to explain what had happened to the child to make him unresponsive.
The child's mother told police the child was acting normally when she left about 7:30 a.m.
Medical evaluations later showed the child had numerous injuries to his body, including a brain injury that resulted in a subdural hematoma. This was determined to be caused by blunt force trauma. An autopsy was performed, listing a manner of death as homicide.
Follow reporter Matt Ledesma on Twitter @supermatt23.