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Cañon City mother formally charged in Baby’s Death

canon city mother formally charged in babys death
Fremont County Sheriff’s Office

Brook N. Crawford, 20, is facing charges of child abuse, a Class 3 felony; child abuse, a Class 1 misdemeanor; and cruelty to animals – neglect.

Her son, Edward Hayes, died May 23 after he was found unresponsive in a Cañon City motel room and rushed to the hospital May 21.

The man who was the last person to care for Edward, William Jacobs, 21, has formally been charged with first-degree murder, child abuse resulting in death, child abuse resulting in serious bodily injury and cruelty to animals.

The incident happened at Motel 6, where Jacobs, Crawford and Edward had been living since they lost their home to a fire earlier this year.

During his initial interview, according to the affidavit, Jacobs said he was changing the baby’s diaper when “he went stiff and began making gargling noises.”

“William ran downstairs to tell (redacted) that Edward was acting strange and they needed to take him to the doctor and then returned to the room,” the affidavit states. “William began shaking Edward and slapping him on the back to get him to breathe.”

While speaking with him at the hospital, Jacobs told authorities that he was “kinda rough” during that process, but in a later interview, he stated he had not been rough, the affidavit states.

A nurse who was in a neighboring room overheard the commotion and began to assist. The nurse noted that Jacobs was being too rough and took over beginning CPR and calling 911.

When law enforcement arrived, Jacobs refused to identify himself, but he eventually was identified after his state ID was located, the affidavit states.

During an interview, Jacobs admitted to biting Edward’s arm while playing with him and biting too hard, but he also told law enforcement that the baby sustained the bite mark from a dog.

Jacobs also admitted to hitting Edward’s head on the bathroom door frame while he was trying to take him to throw up in the toilet.

The detective noted that Jacobs’ story “was continually changing throughout the interview.”

While Jacobs kept stating that he was scared that he was going to be “pinned” for this and scared of being in trouble, “he never asked about Edward or how he was doing throughout the interview.”

Jacobs’ public defender, Daniel Zettler, during a June 21 hearing said the probable cause affidavit did not present all information available to the court.

“There is additional information that we believe rebuts many of the assumptions that this is something other than a tragedy that was provided to the court at that initial hearing that the prosecution relied on to persuade the court that a $75,000 cash-only bond was appropriate (for Crawford),” he said while arguing for a bond reduction for his client.

He said at the initial bond hearing, the prosecution relied on the argument that Edward’s injuries were consistent with child abuse and were likely to result in his death within 24 hours.

Zettler said immediately after writing the arrest warrant, the investigator spoke to the treating physician at St. Thomas More Hospital who “refused” to sign the serious bodily injury form and said that Children’s Hospital would sign it instead.

Zetler said, according to discovery, the investigator confirmed with the doctor that Edward sustained a brain bleed, but initially, the doctor stated that he could not say that it was from child abuse.

On June 21, Jacobs’ bond was set at $100,000 cash or surety. He is slated to return for a status conference July 12.

Crawford is expected to appear in court for a pretrial conference July 26.

Authored by Carie Canterbury via Canon City Daily Record June 29th 2023

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