Dad JEFFERY ALLEN HOLMES has been arrested on manslaughter charges in the death of his infant daughter, but Grandpa just can't wrap his head around this at all! I know the type: The King of Denial. Very common among the parents of abusers. The fact that the baby was with Dad at the time of the fatal brain injury "incident" isn't allowed to cloud our fantasy version of events in the slightest.
Father defends Wyoming man charged in death of baby: 'He took good care of that little girl'
By Nate Reens The Grand Rapids Press
November 26, 2009, 5:02AM
WYOMING — In the span of three weeks, Michael Holmes said he observed his 4-month-old granddaughter transform from a smiling, spunky infant into a listless little girl with obvious health trouble.
“I looked at that baby and you could tell something wasn’t right, that something had gone wrong,” Holmes said Wednesday. “I told (the mother) that the baby didn’t look right and she should have her checked out.”
Police say a trip to the hospital last Thursday and Ahlanna Tolbert’s subsequent death Saturday was a result of alleged abuse from her father, whom family members identified as Jeffery Allen Holmes.
Holmes, 25, was jailed Tuesday and charged with manslaughter after doctors called police and child protective services workers with concerns about abuse. He is to be arraigned on Friday.
Wyoming Police would not confirm the suspect’s name, but state police records show Jeffery Holmes was arrested on a homicide charge. Police said the child was in her father’s care when the injuries occurred.
Michael Holmes said authorities arrested his son. He contends Jeffery Holmes is innocent and wants police to widen their investigation.
“He took good care of that little girl,” Michael Holmes said. “He’s a good father, and it shows with his other daughter. No one can believe this.”
Michael Holmes said his son has a 2-year-old daughter with another woman.
Police told Jeffery Holmes’ family members the baby suffered a brain injury from either a shaking or beating. There was evidence of blood on Ahlanna’s brain from an injury within 12 hours of when she was taken to the hospital on Thursday, and dried blood from older injuries, Michael Holmes said.
“I guarantee it’s not my son who did something harsh to that child,” Michael Holmes said.
The baby’s mother, Latasha Tolbert, could not be reached Wednesday, the same day Michael Holmes said Ahlanna was buried.
“It’s tragic,” Michael Holmes said. “I’m trying to piece this together.”