Two arrested after Marion baby’s death ruled a homicide

MARION, Ohio (WCMH) – A 10-week old baby is dead and the parents are in jail, accused of child endangering.

Tyler Sprow, 22, and Brittany Oliphant, 18, are behind bars after their young child, born May 6th, was brought to the Marion General Hospital emergency room, unconscious on Wednesday. The child later died that same day.

“Just a tragic day in our community,” says Maj. Jay McDonald of the Marion Police Dept.

The autopsy of the baby conducted by the Franklin County Coroner’s Office showed evidence of abuse and significant injury.

Sprow and Oliphant were arrested on Thursday.

“Those things are always devastating for not just the families involved, but it’s also devastating for the officers, for the medical workers, for the whole community really,” says Maj. McDonald.

He also says he wants the community to know that Ohio is a “Safe Haven” state, meaning unwanted infants up to 30-days-old can be surrendered to personnel at any fire station, hospital or police station, no questions asked.

“It would not have applied in this case, but it’s just something we’d like to try to get out to prevent something of a similar nature happening to a child where this law would be applicable,” says Maj. McDonald.

Tyler Fulton doesn’t know the family of the baby, but lives in the same neighborhood.

“I don’t understand what a kid that age could do to make your parent want to do something like that to them,” says Fulton. “Love your kids, they can’t do anything bad enough to make you want to hurt them that bad.”

Sprow is being held on a $1 million bond. Oliphant will be arraigned on Monday. Police say more charges may be filed soon.

This is the second infant death in Marion County this summer. Last month, Tequila Mannering was arrested after a 9-1-1 call about her 6-month-old son not breathing.

He died two days later at Nationwide Children’s Hospital. Investigators believe the boy was beaten to death. Mannering is charged with murder and endangering children.

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