By Bill Duhart firstname.lastname@example.org|
Najuquan Ross allegedly beat his girlfriend’s daughter, Natalise “Kayla” Gunter, while he was babysitting her and two other children on July 15.
The mother of the children, Lucy Gunter, returned home from work later that evening and saw Kayla had cuts to her face and missing a tooth, a statement from the prosecutor said. When Gunter asked how she was injured, Ross reportedly told her he had beaten Kayla for not wanting to eat dinner, and that she lost her tooth during the beating when she fell trying to fight back.
Three days later, Kayla was rushed to Cooper University Hospital by ambulance after she was found unresponsive in her bedroom. She died later that morning.
Police and medical personnel reported seeing bruises and abrasions across her body. Gunter was charged with endangering the welfare of a child for failing to get her medical attention until three days after the incident.
Ross is being held at the Camden County jail. He is scheduled to have a pretrial detention hearing Tuesday.
Gunter was released from jail on July 21 after prosecutors failed to prove to a judge she was a flight risk.
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