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I-Team pieces together new details in toddler's murder

Updated: Saturday, May 24, 2014 |
I-Team pieces together new details in toddler
KALAMAZOO, Mich. (NEWSCHANNEL 3) - The I-Team is piecing together new details into the alleged murder of a 2-year-old boy in Kalamazoo.

We broke the news Thursday about an arrest in the case involving the death of 2-year-old Nehemiah Dodd back in January.

40-year-old Brian Roberts is charged with felony murder and first degree child abuse in connection with the death of the boy.

Nehemiah was Roberts' son, and was placed in his father's care by the Department of Human Services.

The I-Team took the case on back in January, when it didn't appear anything was happening in the case to get some justice for the little boy known as Nemo.

At the time the incident happened this winter, we obtained documents showing the child died a violent death, but for months, nobody was charged with a crime in connection with it.

Then the news came down Thursday about formal charges against his father, Brian Roberts.

We knew months ago that Nemo had bleeding on his brain, bilateral retinal hemorrhaging, and detached retinas, and there was a belief in court documents that Roberts' explanations for Nemo's injuries just didn't add up.

Roberts had  Nemo because the boy's biological mother was terminated as his parent.

But we reported in February that case workers at DHS knew that Roberts had never been a father to any of his four children in the past, and in a court hearing, we watched DHS workers openly questioning his parenting abilities weeks before Nemo's death.

Nothing was done to prevent the placement, and it's still unclear whether DHS did a background check on him.

Roberts has a criminal history dating back several years, and was most recently convicted in 2012 of a drug charge.

In a background investigation the I-Team did on Roberts, we found he's been in the Kalamazoo County Jail eight times over the years.

If Roberts had been sentenced as a habitual offender for his most recent conviction--it's possible Roberts could have been in jail the entire last year, which likely would have changed the course of events in little Nemo's life.
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