Death penalty possible for dad accused of slamming baby - Cincinnati News, FOX19-WXIX TV

Death penalty possible for dad accused of slamming baby

James Phillips (Hamilton County Sheriff's Office/Provided) James Phillips (Hamilton County Sheriff's Office/Provided)

The father accused of slamming his 3-month-old daughter could face the death penalty after the infant died last week, Prosecutor Joe Deters announced Tuesday.

A Hamilton County grand jury indicted James Phillips, 35, on one count of aggravated murder, two counts murder, one count felonious assault and one count child endangering.

Sheriff's officials wrote in court records that Phillips admitted to slamming daughter Jasmine on her back, which resulted in severe skull fractures and an inability for the infant to breathe unassisted.

The coroner ruled Jasmine's death a homicide by blunt force trauma.

Phillips was at his Hamilton Avenue home with three young children when authorities responded to reports of a baby not breathing on Oct. 17.

Court records state a neighbor called 911 and attempted CPR until paramedics arrived.  She was transported to Cincinnati Children’s Hospital where she died the next day.

The mother was not home at the time of the incident and the two older siblings, ages 5 and 2, have been placed with relatives, Deters said. 

If convicted on all charges, Phillips could face the death penalty.

“Another baby dead at the hands of the person who was supposed to protect her.  Our community has seen far too many of these cases in recent months,” Deters said in a statement released Tuesday. “As I get further into my service as prosecutor, I am simply stunned that someone would direct this horrific violence towards a baby.”

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