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Mother Charged With Murder, Abuse in Child's Death

AURORA, Mo. – Investigation into the death of a 4-year-old boy in Aurora in December has led to the filing of murder and domestic abuse charges against the child’s mother.
AURORA, Mo. – Investigation into the death of a 4-year-old boy in Aurora in December has led to the filing of second-degree murder and domestic abuse charges against the child’s mother.

Jade Murray, 22, was charged on Thursday in Lawrence County in connection with the death of her son, Skylar Bradley, at a Springfield hospital on Dec. 14, 2013, according to a probable cause statement filed in the case. The boy died of a ruptured spleen and his body bore bruises on the side and back area, according to an autopsy report.

Under questioning after the death, Murray admitted to investigators that she struck the boy several times in anger, knocking him off his bed and onto another bed, where she told him to stay.

Court documents state she told investigators that when she returned to the room an hour later, the boy seemed ill and was not hungry. After another 45 minutes, he was unresponsive, she said.

Murray took the child for medical care to Aurora and he was transported to Mercy Springfield hospital, where he died, the probable cause statement says.

Court documents indicate that investigators were told by others they interviewed that Murray Detectives learned from others that Bradley has a “very hot temper and that she would routinely strike (Skylar), sometimes with her hand, sometimes with a fist and sometimes with a wooden paddle.” The paddle eventually was broken during one such incident and the witnesses also said they had been bruises on the child’s body and face.

“These witnesses advised that, at times, they witnessed (Skylar) in a drugged condition,” according to the probable cause statement.

Murray is being held in the Lawrence County Jail in lieu of $250,000 bond. Court dates are pending.

The sentence for second-degree murder, if Murray is convicted, can be as much as 30 years in prison. For second-degree domestic assault, punishment can be up to seven years in prison.
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