4:29 PM EDT, May 30, 2012
A stepmother accused of killing a 2-year-old boy was preliminarily charged with murder Wednesday.
Police were originally called to Autumn Dunn's home in the 8000 block of Sansa Court on reports of an unconscious child May 20.
Dunn, 29, told officers the boy, Skyler Dunn, had been sleeping and when she went to check on him, she was unable to wake him. She said the boy had fallen down in the yard earlier in the morning but he hadn't appeared to be hurt.
Dunn said she then went to wake the boy's father from a nap. The boy's father said Skyler was breathing shallowly and wouldn't open his eyes. The father said he used cold water to try to wake the boy. When that didn't wake the boy, he placed his mother-in-law's oxygen mask around Skyler's mouth. When that failed to wake the boy, he told Autumn Dunn to call 911.
The boy was taken to Riley Hospital for Children at IU Health suffering severe, life threatening head trauma. Police said the boy suffered two skull fractures, had massive hemorrhaging and had lost the gray-white matter of almost the entire right cerebral hemisphere of his brain. Police said he also had marks on his neck, bruising on his lower back and forehead, his lower spine and his privates.
Police interviewed Autumn Dunn again. She then changed her story and said she had accidentally dropped the boy after bringing him inside when he was done playing outside. She said the boy hit a concrete slab with linoleum over it. She said she picked Skyler back up and he was fussy. She said she lost her temper and said, "Fine, if you want down so bad..." and then dropped the boy again.
She said she heard a large thud and knew the boy was hurt but that he had stopped crying. She said she let him watch cartoons because she felt bad and then put him back to bed.
Dunn was immediately arrested on charges of aggravated battery and two counts of neglect of a dependent.
The young boy died Sunday, just one week after suffering the extensive head trauma. Following the boy's death, Dunn was also charged with murder and additional counts of neglect of a dependent and battery.
Dunn is expected to appear in court Friday for an initial hearing.