Coroner rules death of toddler as homicide - WAFB 9 News Baton Rouge, Louisiana News, Weather, Sports

Coroner rules death of toddler as homicide

Da'Laijah Smith (Source: Facebook) Da'Laijah Smith (Source: Facebook)
Candice Smith (Source: EBRSO) Candice Smith (Source: EBRSO)
BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) -

The East Baton Rouge Parish Coroner has classified the death of 2-year-old Da'Laijah Smith as a homicide.

“It is with great sadness and respect we investigate any unexpected or traumatic death,” said Dr. William “Beau” Clark, EBR Parish Coroner. “When our investigation involves the violent death of a child, it is particularly tragic and we extend our thoughts and condolences to Da'Laijah's family and friends.”

The autopsy shows that Da'Laijah suffered from blunt force injuries of the abdomen, thorax, head and neck with recent and remote rib fractures. Also noted were abrasions and contusions of the upper and lower extremities.

The investigation began around 9:15 p.m. on Monday when EMS was called to a home on Beachwood Drive. When they arrived, they found Da'Laijah unresponsive.

The child was rushed to the hospital where she later died as a result of traumatic injuries.

When questioned by police, the child's mother, Candice Shanee Smith, 21, allegedly admitted to pushing the child, causing her to fall and strike her head against a shower wall.

“Smith also admitted to other multiple acts of physical abuse,” said Cpl. Don Coppola. “Investigators observed Da'Laijah to have multiple signs of bruising and fingernail marks to her extremities.”

Smith is currently being held in the East Baton Rouge Parish Prison.

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