A 32-year-old man from the Federal Way area was charged Wednesday with second-degree murder domestic violence, accused of suffocating his infant son with a blanket and striking the baby’s face because the child wouldn’t stop crying, according to King County prosecutors. The 7-week-old stopped breathing and died.
Agustin Tamayo-Lopez was arrested Saturday at his apartment complex in unincorporated King County, south of Federal Way and remains jailed in lieu of $500,000 bail, though prosecutors have since asked that his bail be increased to $1 million, jail and court records show. He is to be arraigned Feb. 9. Court records do not yet name his defense attorney.
The baby, born Dec. 1, is identified in charging documents as Aran Gonzalez. As of Wednesday, the King County Medical Examiner’s Office had not completed an autopsy but initial findings confirmed the presence of petechiae, which are pinpoint hemorrhages on the skin and eyes and are indicators of suffocation or strangulation, bruising to the baby’s face and bleeding in his brain, say the charges.
Based on the investigation so far, a King County sheriff’s detective determined that Aran’s death was neither natural nor accidental and evidence indicates his death is a homicide, according to charging papers. Investigators say Tamayo-Lopez was the sole adult responsible for the baby’s care at the time of his death and admitted to putting a blanket over the child’s mouth and nose and striking him, the charges say.
Just before 1 p.m. Saturday, Tamayo-Lopez’s girlfriend called 911 from her Puyallup workplace on behalf of her boyfriend and reported that her baby was in medical distress at their apartment in the 2000 block of South 360th Street. Also present at the apartment was Aran’s 2-year-old sister and 6-year-old brother, according to the charges.
Medics attempted to save the baby, but he died about 30 minutes later.
The baby’s mother arrived home and told detectives Aran was seemingly healthy, had no medical issues and had been gaining weight like a typical 7-week-old. She had last seen her children and boyfriend when she left for work four hours earlier and said she called 911 after receiving a frantic call from her boyfriend that the baby wasn’t breathing, the charges say.
During an interview with detectives, investigators say Tamayo-Lopez initially claimed Aran had been put down for a nap and became unresponsive but later admitted he became angry and frustrated when the baby wouldn’t stop crying, according to the charges.