In 2003, Marcus Claudius Oglesby of Runnemede, New Jersey, was convicted of second degree child abuse here in Michigan, and sentenced to prison. After three years he was released, but now, thirteen years after that initial conviction, Oglesby is facing charges again. This time it’s because his daughter, who was only 8-months-old when he was initially accused of abusing her, has passed away, and the prosecutor’s office claims that Oglesby is to blame.
When Keyaria Oglesby was rushed to the hospital by paramedics thirteen years ago,Oglesby told investigators that it had been an accident that occurred while he was playing with her, tossing her into the air and catching her. “I threw her up about five times. After the fifth time I threw her up she just slipped out of my hand and I tried to grab her and she swung and hit the left side of her face on the edge — on the arm of the chair and then she fell and hit — hit the floor on the right side of her face, and then she just — I was so shocked that I didn’t know what to do.”
But according to the doctor who provided testimony at Oglesby’s trial, a specialist in pediatric medicine and child abuse, this was a classic case of abuse. During his testimony, Dr. Stephen Guertin told the court that Keyaria “was almost certainly, almost absolutely, with the exception of a one in thousands chance, abused.” He also said that the mechanism was “blows to the baby’s head.”
At the trial, Catherine Emerson, an assistant county prosecutor, explained to the jury that Keyaria was “living dead” because she would never walk, never talk, and never be able to swallow food or feed herself. Now 13 years later, Keyaria has passed away and the autopsy seems to have revealed that her death was a direct result of the abuse she sustained as an infant.
As a result, Oglesby has been charged with murder in the death of his daughter. Although it may seem strange that prosecutors are charging him again, given that he was already charged for the abuse all those years ago, Ingham County Chief Assistant Prosecuting Attorney Lisa McCormick says that double jeopardy doesn’t come into play here. According to McCormick, Michigan law does allow prosecutors to charge someone in a murder, even if the death in question takes place after a conviction on lesser charges.
At the time that the warrant was released, Oglesby was in jail in New Jersey on unrelated charges. He was extradited to Michigan to face charges, and is currently being held without bond in the Ingham County Jail. Oglesby’s preliminary hearing is scheduled for August 8th in the 54A District Court in Lansing, at which time the Judge will determine whether or not there is enough evidence to bind the case over to the circuit court for trial.