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Babysitter Accused of Murdering Mich. Toddler: 'She Threw My Son into the Wall,' Says Mom

People logo People 6/24/2022 Tristan Balagtas

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A babysitter in Michigan is behind bars after allegedly murdering a 23-month-old boy left in her care.

WDIV-TV, citing police, reports 21-year-old Kimora Launmei Hodges — who had babysat the boy on and off for the past two months — was watching him at his Roseville, Mich., apartment on June 13 while his mother was at work, when Hodges allegedly physically abused him.

Following the alleged beating, Hodges called the boy's mother, 18-year-old Taylor Starks, to tell her he did not appear normal after ingesting soap. Hodges said the boy was having an allergic reaction, police said.

A call was reportedly placed to 911, and WJBK-TV reports that Starks rushed home.

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"Once I made it there, my baby was on the ground having seizure, after seizure, after seizure," she told the station.

The boy was transported to the hospital, where he underwent emergency surgery.

"He had blunt force trauma to the head, and he was bleeding out his ears and had to have immediate brain surgery," Starks said. "All I know is she threw my son into the wall and shook him up pretty bad, and they said that's just a bit of what she did to him."


Video: Mom speaks out afters son allegedly sexually assaulted by babysitter (CBS Pittsburgh)

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According to the outlet, Kyrie succumbed to his injuries on Wednesday.

Hodges' initial charge of first degree child abuse has now been upgraded to felony murder, an official at Macomb County's 39th District Court tells PEOPLE.

Macomb County Sheriff's Office © Provided by People Macomb County Sheriff's Office

Starks posted a tribute to Kyrie on Instagram, writing in part, "I'm hurting so bad because you know you were my everything!! I had you at 16 by myself and we been doing this together ever since. We were growing up together. No matter how bad we struggled or was going thru, you never judged me."

She continued, "I promise to get justice for you Kyrie and I promise to make all of this mean something and worth the pain you endured."

Jail records indicate Hodges is currently being held at the Macomb County Jail without bond.

Hodges has retained defense attorney Joan Morgan, who did not immediately respond to PEOPLE'S request for comment.

According to the district court, Hodges has not yet entered a plea to the charge.

She is scheduled to appear June 29.

A GoFundMe campaign organized to aid with Kyrie's funeral expenses has so far raised over $70,000.

If you suspect child abuse, call the Childhelp National Child Abuse Hotline at 1-800-4-A-Child or 1-800-422-4453, or go to www.childhelp.org. All calls are toll-free and confidential. The hotline is available 24/7 in more than 170 languages.

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