Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Dad charged with "unlawful conduct" in asphyxiation death of 6-month-old son (York County, South Carolina)

Dad is identified as JOSEPH DOMINIC PESA. No mention of a mother in the home.


October 8, 2015

Warrant accuses Rock Hill father of shaking baby, causing death

Joseph Dominic Pesa, 19, charged with unlawful conduct toward a child

SLED arrest warrant accuses Pesa of putting the infant “face down” on a bed


A Rock Hill father was arrested Wednesday in a case involving a 6-month-old baby boy who was brought to the emergency room unresponsive in March, and later died.

Joseph Dominic Pesa, 19, was charged with unlawful conduct toward a child and taken to the city jail, Rock Hill Police Department records show. A judge on Wednesday set Pesa’s bond at $150,000.

The York County Coroner’s Office ruled the “most likely” cause of death for 6-month-old Jacob Pesa-Mendoza was asphyxia due to being placed face down on adult bedding. Coroner Sabrina Gast listed the baby’s manner of death as “unable to determine.”

The coroner’s office in March did not rule on the “manner of death” but, after reviewing medical records, autopsy/toxicology results, and interviewing caregivers and experts, Gast said the infant was prevented from being able to breathe.

A police spokesman said the case was turned over to the State Law Enforcement Division’s child fatality task force. An arrest warrant provided by SLED alleges Pesa shook the child, “causing his head to move uncontrollably.”

Pesa’s arrest warrant accuses him of putting the infant face down on a bed without seeking medical attention until “hours later.”

Rock Hill officers went to an apartment on India Hook Road where the infant was found unresponsive by EMS workers on March 16, the police report states.

Paramedics said the infant was having difficulty breathing and he was taken to the hospital. A news release from the coroner’s office states the infant was treated at the Carolinas Medical Center in Charlotte. He died March 21.