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The Franklin News-Post
P. O. Box 250
310 Main Street, SW
Rocky Mount, Virginia 24151
Fax: 540-483-8013

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Man pleads guilty to murder of 3-month-old boy
Infant died of head injury in Roanoke hospital
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Xavier Juan Rasado Craighead

Friday, April 11, 2014

By KEN BRADLEY - Staff Writer

A Rocky Mount man pleaded guilty to second-degree murder in the death of a 3-month-old boy in May 2013.

Xavier Juan Rasado Craighead, 20, entered the guilty plea Thursday in Franklin County Circuit Court through an agreement with the commonwealth's attorney's office.

The plea agreement also calls for two child abuses charges to be dismissed.

Craighead, 20, was indicted in September 2013 on one count of second-degree murder, one count of felony child abuse and one count of felony child neglect, according to Franklin County Commonwealth's Attorney Tim Allen.

The child died of blunt force trauma to the head, Allen said.

On May 4, the mother of the infant called a rescue squad to her Windy Lane residence to transport the child to the hospital, Allen said.

The infant died at Carilion Roanoke Memorial Hospital on May 19 of subdural hemorrhaging, caused by a fractured skull, according to the autopsy report.

A forensic anthropologist also examined the bones and found several rib fractures, some of which had already started to heal while others were more recent, Allen said.

Craighead was the mother's boyfriend, Allen said. The mother of the infant was not at home when the fatal incident occurred.

At first, Craighead said he did not know how the child got injured but later confessed that he had been using illegal drugs and that he slammed the baby on the ground.

A sentencing hearing for Craighead is set for July 7 at 2 p.m. in circuit court. Second-degree murder is an Unclassified felony, punishable by five to 40 years in prison.

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