Boyfriend: Gave baby 'whupping' with belt every day before his death


Damien Lamont Henderson, 23, is charged with injury to a child and Trachell Foster, 23, is charged with injury to a child by omission after 13-month-old Taemor Hicks died Friday. Bail has been set at $50,000 for each.

Foster, the baby's mother, told police she went to a job interview at 9am Friday and left Taemor with Henderson, her live-in boyfriend. Henderson called 911 shortly after 11am to report that the baby had stopped breathing. HFD paramedics arrived and took Taemor to Northwest Memorial Hospital where he was pronounced dead 10 minutes after arrival.

When police questioned Henderson about marks on the child's chest, he initially told them they were burn marks from the stove, but then admitted that he gave the baby a "whupping," striking him seven to eight times with a belt, court documents state. Henderson then showed police the space in an air conditioning vent where he allegedly hid the belt before calling 911.

Henderson also told officers that he would hit the baby with the belt on a daily basis. He also admitted that sometimes he would hit the one-year-old with his hand until his hand hurt.

Foster told officers that she had seen Henderson hit her son on numerous occasions over the last two months and it made her uncomfortable.

A doctor told police the autopsy could not immediately rule a cause of death for Taemor, but noted a list of injuries, including injuries to his face, lips, chest and testicle. The baby suffered such extensive injuries his legs and buttocks, the doctor said, that some of the muscle tissue had died and was decaying, and he thought that Taemor would not have been able to walk during the last week of his life.

The doctor added that Taemor's head injuries would have caused brain damage, had he lived.

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