Father To Be Charged With Murder Of Daughter

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ARNOLD, MO. (KPLR) – A 21 year old Arnold father is expected to be charged Tuesday with murder after his 18 month old daughter died Monday afternoon at Cardinal Glennon Children's Hospital.  She was discovered Sunday badly beaten and barely alive.

Prior to her death, Jamell Johnson had already been charged with first degree assault, child abuse and child endangerment.

The discovery was made Sunday afternoon in an apartment in the 200 block of Crosswinds Drive in Arnold.

Johnson had called police because the baby was unresponsive.

Soon after police arrived, neighbors saw them carry out what appeared to be a lifeless baby girl and put her in an ambulance.

They also saw police remove a charcoal barbeque grill.

According to police, the father called for help, claiming the grill had fallen and hit the baby in the head.

Doctors examining the baby debunked the story and said the child had been badly shaken. They also found bruises all over her body.

According to police, Johnson later admitted to shaking the child uncontrollably, along with squeezing her face and spanking her.

Neighbors like Stephen Brunner, who has a young daughter of his own, is very upset by the situation.

'It is just horrible that somebody could do something like that to their kid.  I can`t believe it,' he said.

'I think it is really sick and messed up and really sad and upsetting,' said neighbor Megan Schlercher.

Neighbors say Johnson lived in the apartment with a woman they presumed to be his girlfriend, but know little about them because the couple had only lived there a few months and kept to themselves.

No one other than the father was home when police arrived.

Johnson is being held in Jefferson County on a $100,000 cash only bond.

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