30-year-old Justin Crouse was arrested this morning and charged with second-degree murder for the death of Gage Seneca.
Erie County Sheriff’s deputies say the incident happened at around 1 a.m. Tuesday on the Seneca Nation’s Cattaraugus Reservation when the toddler got out of bed and went to his mother’s bedroom, Crouse hit him, put him back in his bed and then went back to bed himself.
Detectives were called to the house at 8:19 Tuesday morning after Gage’s mother called 911 to report her son was not breathing. The boy, who just turned 3 last week, was taken to Lake Shore Community Hospital, where he was pronounced dead at 8:45 a.m.
An autopsy says he died of blunt force trauma to the head.