Brumley toddler's parents searching for answers
Wed, 06 Feb 2008 23:44:20 GMT — We continue to uncover new information in the case surrounding a Brumley toddler who died last Tuesday. 32-year-old Roshell Johnson was arrested on charges of second-degree murder, endangering the welfare of a child, and abuse of a child after University of Missouri Hospital officials told Miller County deputies the child's injuries were consistent with those in a case of shaken baby syndrome. Ocean McCoy, the 20-month-old who died, was Johnson's fiance's daughter. KRCG's Mallory McGowin sat down with Ocean's parents Tuesday and learned they have a number of questions regarding their daughter's death and the charges Johnson faces.
"That is the hardest thing to try to deal with in the world, is somebody actually telling you that somebody beat your child or shook your child. All I want to know is the truth of what happened to my baby that night," says Kimberly Rohr, Ocean's mother.
But Ocean's parents do not think the truth is represented in the Miller County Sheriff Departmen't's probable cause statement, and here's why.
"She refused to talk to the Miller County Sheriff's Department without an attorney present," says Francis McCoy, Ocean's father and Johnson's fiance.
McCoy says a Miller County detective told him that information after McCoy had completed an interview with the sheriff's department last Friday. Mccoy says the next thing he knew, Johnson had given a written statement and was under arrest.
I sat down with Miller County detectives and Sheriff Bill Abbott to ask them what they thought about McCoy's claims and if they stand by the information in their probable cause statement.
Off-camera they all tell me they have complete confidence in their probable cause statement and their investigation. Detectives tell me they never told McCoy that Johnson refused to speak without an attorney present.
Ocean's parents say they want to see the autopsy results for themselves before they pass judgement on the situation. But Miller County authorities tell me that complete report could be weeks away.
We contacted authorities at the University of Missouri School of Medicine who performed Ocean's autopsy to try to confirm the injuries they found. They declined our request for comment.