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911 Call Paints Chilling Picture After Dead Infant Discovered In Car Seat In Kanawha City

Reported: Jun. 4, 2014 12:22 PM EDT
Updated: Jun. 4, 2014 6:44 PM EDT
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CHARLESTON, W.Va. (Leslie Rubin) -- The investigation into how exactly a 5-week-old baby in the care of his father ended up dead in a car seat in Kanawha City continues.

Eyewitness News has obtained the 911 call made by the child's mother when she made the horrifying discovery.

Two weeks ago, 5-week-old Madden Smith was found dead in a car seat with what police have described as multiple skull fractures and blood coming from his nose and ears.

Police believe his father, Robert Jeremy Smith, 33, waited 27 hours before he told anyone the child was dead.

"What's going on?" asked the 911 operator.

"Oh God, well, I don't wanna. My husband just showed up. We've been separated. He dropped, he dropped my 5-week-old baby," Jennifer Smith responded.

"He done what?" asked the operator.

"He dropped my 5-week-old baby and it died."

"When did he do this to the child?" the operator continued to ask.

"It happened yesterday, last night," Smith said.

"And he dropped him?" the operator asked.

"Yes, on accident. He has a deformed arm. Oh God, help me," Smith said.

"Did he mean to drop the child?" the operator asked.

"No," Smith said. "He did not mean to drop the child, he was changing his diaper. Oh God, help me."

"Where is he at now?" the operator asked.

"He's here but he tried to kill himself last night," Smith said.

"Is he outside, inside?" the operator asked.

"We are outside, I can't even function right now," Smith said.

Police believe the child was killed at Smith's mother's home in Hurricane the day before, while he was in his care.

According to a search warrant obtained by Eyewitness News, police seized a hammer, and several possible blood stained items fro the home, along with possible suicide notes.

Police have not said how the child died, but said Smith admitted to dropping the baby, and shaking him before he went into the shower and tried to slit his own throat.

"Did the ambulance come up there?" asked the operator.

"No, he didn't call them because he was scared," Smith said.

"Where's the child at now?" the operator asked.

"In the car right now," the mother said.

"Did you know that he dropped the child yesterday?" continued the operator.

"No, I did not know he dropped the child. He didn't tell me because it was my ," Smith said.

"He's in the car now?" the operator asked.

"He's in the car, I can't even go, I can't even look," Smith said.

"Is the kid in the car?" the operator asked.

"Yes," Smith said. "Oh, God, help me."

Jennifer and Jeremy Smith were charged with child neglect in 2013, after police said they left a 12-year-old to watch over four young children, including an infant. Those charges were later dropped.

Smith is on suicide watch at the Western Regional Jail.

His case could be heard by the Putnam County grand jury in July.




CHARLESTON, W.Va. (Leslie Rubin) -- The investigation continues into how exactly a 5-week-old baby in the care of his father ended up dead in a car seat in Kanawha City.

Baby Madden was found dead two weeks ago in a car seat, with what police have described as multiple skull fractures and blood coming from his nose and ears. Police believe his father, Robert Jeremy Smith, waited 27 hours before he told anyone the child was dead.

Eyewitness News learned exclusively last week that a hammer was recovered, during the execution of a search warrant, from Smith's mother's home in Hurricane - the place police believe the baby died.

The hammer was to undergo testing to determine if it was used in the child's death, but police have not gone as far as to connect the two just yet. They said that is all still under investigation. Smith's mother and brother defended him the night he was arrested, claiming the incident was an accident and that Smith has a bad arm that may have caused him to drop the child.

On Wednesday morning Eyewitness News obtained the 911 call made by Smith's wife, Jennifer, when he showed up at her home on Venable Avenue in Kanawha city after trying to slit his own throat.

A partial transcript of the call follows:
"He dropped the 5-week-old baby, and it died."
"When?"
"Then he tried to kill himself. Last night. Oh, God, help me."
"Has then been reported by the child?"
"No, he just came here."
"When did he do this to the child?"
"It happened yesterday, last night.
"And he dropped him?"
"Yes, on accident. He has a deformed arm. Oh, God, help me."
"Did he mean to drop the child."
"No, he did not mean to drop the child, he was changing his diaper. Oh, God, help me."
"Where is he at now?"
"He's here, but he tried to kill himself last night."
"Is he outside, inside?"
"We are outside. I can't even function right now."


We will have much more on this story tonight on Eyewitness News at 6 p.m. on WCHS.



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