Mother sought on murder charge in death of toddler from Southeast Side

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Mother sought on murder charge in death of toddler from Southeast Side

Jim Woods The Columbus Dispatch

Mar 24, 2020 at 8:45 PM

Columbus police homicide detectives are looking for a mother who has been charged with murder, accused of fatally injuring her 2-year-old son at her Southeast Side apartment last October.

Tina Ann Dayton, 22, of the 4600 block of Refugee Road, is still at large after a warrant charging her with murder was filed March 6 in Franklin County Municipal Court, detectives announced Tuesday night.

Clifford A. Stark III, 2, was pronounced dead at 12:54 p.m. Oct. 8 at Nationwide Children’s Hospital, a day after being transported there by Columbus Fire paramedics.

The Franklin County coroner’s office on Feb. 27 ruled the toddler’s death was a homicide.

The autopsy determined that Clifford died from “blunt force trauma.” Signs of trauma were all over his body, including a broken right arm, bruising on the forehead and a lacerated liver, Franklin County Municipal Court records said.Clifford’s mother told police that her son had fallen off the bed, court records said. The hospital’s attending trauma surgeon told police detectives that her story “was not consistent with the injury,” court records state.The mother told police she was the only parent residing at the apartment. But a few hours after Clifford was transported, the father, Clifford Stark Jr., 27, came there from work and was detained by officers, court records state.The father admitted to police he was staying at the apartment, but both he and the mother denied causing any injury to the toddler, records state.Police believe […]

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