5-year-old child dies from injuries, charges upgraded against father

Varnell Day, Jr. (Source: Kiran Chawla/WAFB)
Varnell Day, Jr. (Source: Kiran Chawla/WAFB)
Source: East Baton Rouge Parish Sheriff's Office
Source: East Baton Rouge Parish Sheriff's Office

BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - A father is now facing a murder charge after his 5-year-old son died Wednesday night as a result of suspected abuse.

The Baton Rouge Police Department reported Jay'v'une Bergin died shortly before 10 p.m. His father, Varnell Day Jr., 36, was booked Thursday morning on a charge of first-degree murder. He was originally arrested Tuesday and charged with attempted first-degree murder. As he was being taken to the prison the first time, Day publicly stated to reporters that he did not attack his son.

The boy was taken to the hospital on Monday after Day called for help and told medics the boy was injured from a fall off the bed.

"EMS located the male victim and found he was unresponsive," the officer noted. "[Hospital] staff further advised the victim's injuries were not consistent with a fall from a bed."

During an examination, it was determined that Bergin was suffering from "multiple brain bleeds, bruises all over his body in various stages of healing and contusions to the forehead." Medical staff alerted police.

An investigation was launched and detectives questioned Day and searched his home.

"During the execution of that search warrant, [officers] located a magazine containing several live rounds of ammunition in [Day's] bedroom," the officer noted.

Court records from East Baton Rouge Parish showed Day was convicted in January 2009 and was sentenced to serve two years for possession with intent to distribute Xanex. He pleaded guilty to the charges.

"He is currently prohibited by law from possessing firearm ammunition," the officer added.

Day's criminal record, however, extends back to 1997 when he pleaded guilty to trespassing charges and was sentenced to supervised probation. From then on, he faced several drug arrests and convictions in 1998, 2000, 2005, and 2007.

A GoFundMe account has been set up to help with funeral expenses for Jay'v'une. To donate, CLICK HERE.

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