A Randolph County resident has been arrested in connection to the death of an 18-month-old child. Joe Laswell, 23, of Clark, is being held on charges of domestic assault and child abuse. Investigators said additional charges are pending. The Randolph County Sheriff’s Office launched an investigation Sunday morning after doctors at Moberly Regional Medical Center pronounced the child dead. Members of the Highway Patrol’s Division of Drug and Crime Control were called to assist in the investigation. An autopsy has been scheduled for Monday. Details surrounding the child’s death have not been released, however according to a report from the Highway Patrol, Laswell is an acquaintance of the child’s mother. Laswell was placed on a 24-hour hold in the Randolph County jail.
Press Release from the Missouri State Highway Patrol – Troop B
On Sunday, November 11, 2012, at approximately 8:50 a.m., the Randolph County Sheriff’s Department was notified that a family was transporting an unresponsive male child to the Moberly Regional Medical Center in Moberly, Missouri. Upon officers arrival at the hospital, 18-month old Jayden Bradds, of rural Clark, Missouri, had been pronounced deceased. Members of the Missouri State Highway Patrol’s Division of Drug and Crime Control were requested to assist with the death investigation. On November 11, 2012, at approximately 2:45 p.m., Joe Laswell, 23, of rural Clark, Missouri, was arrested for domestic assault in the second degree and child abuse, with additional charges pending. Laswell, an acquaintance of the child’s mother, was transported to the Randolph County Jail where he is currently being held on a 24-hour hold. The investigation is on-going, and an autopsy has been scheduled for Monday, November 12, 2012, at the Boone County Medical Examiner’s office in Columbia, Missouri.
The charges for which Laswell was arrested are mere accusations and are not evidence of guilt. Evidence in support of the charges must be presented before a court of competent jurisdiction whose duty is to determine guilt or innocence.