A Dubuque man now faces a first degree murder charge after the death of a toddler.
Dubuque County prosecutors are charging Nicholas Reed, 34, of Dubuque, with first-degree murder as well as the initial charges of neglect or abandonment of a dependent person, manufacturing methamphetamine and manufacturing marijuana.
According to police, the mother of two-year-old Bentley Randall, Kylee Vandermuelen, 20, of Dubuque, dropped her son off with Reed, her boyfriend, before work on Friday, Nov. 23.
When she returned to Reed's home at 2926 Timberline Street in Dubuque, she found her son injured and took him to the Finely Hospital, where medical professionals said he had severe burns and head trauma. Officials say Bentley was in Reed's care at the time he acquired these injuries.
A helicopter air-lifted Bentley to University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics, where he died that Sunday.
As part of the ongoing investigation, medical personnel at the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics recently determined Bentley died from blunt force trauma to the head.
Doctors advised Bentley's injuries were consistent with being shaken and slammed. Hair stat tests were also conducted on Bentley and came back positive for methamphetamine and marijuana, according to police.
Bentley was acting normal and not exhibiting signs or symptoms of head trauma when his mother dropped him off at Reed's residence, according to police.
Reed appears in court Tuesday morning at 8:30.
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