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UPDATE | Stepfather charged in connection with 3-year-old’s death

Published: Feb. 2, 2021 at 10:06 PM EST
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UPDATE 2/3/21 @ 9:14 a.m.

BRAXTON COUNTY, W.Va. (WSAZ) – A stepfather has been charged in connection with his stepson’s death.

Samuel Thomas Workman, 33, of Sutton has been charged with the death of a child by child abuse and neglect, according to the Braxton County Prosecuting Attorney.

According to the criminal complaint, on Tuesday, Feb. 2, troopers were notified about an unresponsive 3-year-old boy at a home in the 3000 block of Old Turnpike Road.

When first responders arrived, they found the child, along with a 1-year-old, with Workman. However, the complaint states a neighbor had “secured” the 1-year-old.

Dispatchers say Workman, the stepfather to the 3-year-old, had called 911, but left when EMS crews arrived. Officials report Workman showed up at the emergency room later.

The 3-year-old was taken to the hospital but later pronounced dead. The criminal complaint states there were what appeared to be bruises and trauma all over the child’s body, which officials say indicates extreme physical abuse.

“I just feel sometimes like crying for the little baby,” neighbor Bill Barry said. “Now, he can’t live his life. He can’t grow up to be whatever he would like to be. He is in heaven, and he is a little angel now.”

Troopers also noticed that Workman had fresh wounds and swelling on both hands and around his knuckles. He also had blood and an unknown fluid on his clothing.

“They were well-mannered children,” neighbor Heather Barker said. “They were always happy, it seemed. Always smiling and playing. I never saw no bruises on them, so I never even expected something like that was going on.”

Troopers say during an interview, Workman said he left the residence several times and went to another home to smoke marijuana. While he was there, the children were left alone at the home on Old Turnpike Road. Workman told law enforcement he went back to the house and found the 3-year-old unresponsive. He said he tried to perform CPR for 20 to 30 minutes before calling 911.

“It is just getting to the point were I want to move out, try to find some place that’s going to be safe,” Barry said. “I just couldn’t imagine what, the pain and anguish that that little boy went through.”

Workman was arrested and is being held in Central Regional Jail on a $250,000 cash-only bond.

Officials say Workman has prior arrests for domestic assault and battery, drug charges, resisting arrest and several counts of retaliation against a public employee.

“It just terrified me even more because he just seemed like such a normal person,” Barker said. “I knew he needed help. He kept telling me he needed help, he was on medicine three times per day. I thought it was working.”

If convicted, Workman faces 15 years to life in prison.

Keep checking the WSAZ app for the latest information.

ORIGINAL STORY 2/2/21 @ 10:06 p.m.

BRAXTON COUNTY, W.Va. (WSAZ) – A man from Braxton County faces abuse charges in connection with an infant’s death, West Virginia State Police said Tuesday.

Samuel Thomas Workman, 33, of Sutton is charged with the death of a child by child abuse and neglect.

Troopers say Workman was arrested Tuesday afternoon and taken to the Central Regional Jail.

Additional information is unavailable at this time, but we’re working to find out more. Keep checking the WSAZ app for the latest information.

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