Father sentenced to life in beating death of son

Jay'v'une Bergin (Source: gofundme.com page)
Jay'v'une Bergin (Source: gofundme.com page)

BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - A man convicted of killing his 5-year-old son was sentenced in court Wednesday morning.

Vernell Day Jr., 38, of Baton Rouge, was found guilty in February 2017 of second-degree murder in the beating death of Jay'v'une Bergin.

On Wednesday, March 1, Day was sentenced to life in prison. No post-verdict motions were filed by the defense.

During closing arguments, prosecutors reiterated that doctors testified the child suffered multiple blows not consistent with an accident. One of the doctors claimed the child suffered injuries consistent with an auto crash.

The defense argued in its closing that Day had no intent to hurt his son and that his daughter had been in his custody for four years, asking why would he hurt one child and not the other.

"Vernell wants congratulations for a 50 percent survival rate for the children in his care," the prosecutor stated. "I refuse to congratulate him for that."

Investigators said Bergin was taken to the hospital by ambulance on Aug. 18, 2014 and died two days later.

The jury returned the guilty verdict Friday afternoon.


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