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St. Louis County man charged in abuse, death of 3-year-old

St. Louis County man charged in abuse, death of 3-year-old

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ST. LOUIS COUNTY — A 21-year-old man has been charged with second-degree murder and abuse or neglect of a child in the death of a 3-year-old who had been previously removed from the man's care over abuse allegations, police said.

Tevin Branom, of the 11400 block of Latonka Trail in St. Louis County, was charged this week in the death of Eli Taylor on Thursday at the Latonka Trail address, police said.

Tevin Branom

Tevin Branom

Eli and three siblings had been returned to Branom's care about one month prior to Eli's death, county police Sgt. Tracy Panus said in a statement. She said the children had been gone from the home for about 18 months due to prior abuse allegations.

Police and paramedics went to Branom's residence last week for a report of a child not breathing, police said. When they began lifesaving measures, they noticed Eli was bruised and had broken ribs, police said. He was taken to a hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

Branom was not able to offer an explanation for the injuries, police said, adding that Eli's three siblings were taken into protective custody. Eli's cause of death was determined to be abdominal trauma, police said.

Branom was being held in custody on $500,000 bail, cash only, police said. No attorney was listed for Branom.

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