A three-month-old who was fighting for his life after allegedly being abused by his father has died, according to Cherokee County Coroner Dennis Fowler.
Fowler identified the infant as Malachi Alfred Maurice Tate, Junior.
Tate Junior was taken to Cherokee Medical Center Saturday night by his father, 20-year-old Malachi Alfred Maurice Tate. Tate Junior was unresponsive when he arrived at the Gaffney hospital and was resuscitated before being airlifted to Greenville Children’s Hospital.
Tate Junior’s parents told police he had fallen off the bed a few days before and on Saturday he “wasn’t acting right,” according to Gaffney Police Major Brian Blanton.
A police report indicates Tate Junior had multiple bruises on his forehead and on the back of his neck. Tate Junior suffered several brain bleeds and underwent treatment and evaluation since Saturday night before he ultimately succumbed to his injuries at 3:07 p.m. on Wednesday, March 22.
City police searched Tate’s Chandler Drive apartment where they found evidence of abuse. Blanton could not disclose what type of evidence was processed as the incident remains under investigation. Tate was arrested Sunday on abuse/inflicting great bodily injury upon a child. Municipal Judge Collis Edwards denied bond.
Charges are expected to be upgraded following Tate Junior’s death.
“This child has multiple areas of injuries on his body that are not consistent with a fall as the father initially reported had occurred two days earlier,” Fowler said. “The fatal injuries on this infant are no doubt from abuse. It appears this child may have been tortured and it makes me sick to my stomach that a helpless infant has suffered and lost his life at the hands of someone who had a total disregard for a human. We must send a message that this kind of behavior will not be tolerated.”
An autopsy is scheduled for Friday to assist with the investigation of the infant’s death.
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