Enraged when a baby boy wouldn’t stop crying, a Roy man repeatedly, and fatally, punched the month-old infant in the head, police and prosecutors say.
Matthew Daniel Graves, a 22-year-old ex-con, awaits a Thursday status hearing before 2nd District Judge Joseph Bean on a first-degree felony aggravated murder charge in the death of the child. He is being held without bail in the Weber County jail.
A probable cause statement accompanying charging documents states that police were dispatched on a 911 call to a Roy home near 4400 South and 2000 West about 7:40 a.m. on Sept. 7. They found the baby boy battered and not breathing.
The infant was rushed to Ogden Regional Hospital and then flown by medical helicopter to Primary Children’s Hospital in Salt Lake City, where he later died. Doctors there determined the child had suffered cranial and neck fractures and massive brain damage.
The probable cause statement notes that when interviewed by officers at the hospital, Graves “admitted he had gotten angry because the infant was crying and had punched him repeatedly in the head.”
He also allegedly told police he could not remember how many times he struck the child, “as he had blacked out from rage.” Graves also commented that “he is a monster [and had] lost all hope in life and is going to lose everything,” court documents state.
Graves was on probation at the time of the incident, having earlier been convicted a year ago for unlawful possession of a firearm and drug-related offenses.
In addition to the murder count, Graves now faces felony and misdemeanor counts related to his alleged use of drugs around the infant and his 5-year-old sibling in the home he shared with them.
Court documents did not reveal Graves’ relationship to the children, nor did it mention where the children’s parent or parents were at the time of the attack.