Gresham baby had ‘multiple internal and external injuries’

13-month-old Dominick Smith's mother's boyfriend is charged in his murder

Baby Dominick died Thursday, Sept. 21, 2017 at 13-months old from a traumatic brain injury. The mother's boyfriend was arrested for the murder two days later (Courtesy: Lurdes Rolan)
Baby Dominick died Thursday, Sept. 21, 2017 at 13-months old from a traumatic brain injury. The mother's boyfriend was arrested for the murder two days later (Courtesy: Lurdes Rolan)

PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) – A 13-month old boy died of a traumatic brain injury, according to newly unsealed court documents.

Shalondre Adams in his first court appearance related to the death of a 13-month-old toddler, September 25, 2017 (KOIN)
Shalondre Adams in his first court appearance related to the death of a 13-month-old toddler, September 25, 2017 (KOIN)

Shalondre Adams, 21, is charged with the murder of Dominick Smith.

According to a probable cause affidavit, which was unsealed earlier this week, paramedics were dispatched to the 400 block of Southeast 169th Avenue in Gresham getting a report that a child was not breathing. The first responders were unable to revive Smith.

Investigators learned that Smith lived in the apartment with his mother. Adams and the child’s mother were dating. Adams was not the child’s biological father.

The next day, an autopsy was performed and Dr. Clifford Nelson determined that Smith had multiple internal and external injuries. Nelson determined Smith died of a traumatic brain injury and ruled the death homicide.

Smith and Adams had been dating for 11 months, according to court documents. She told police that Adams treated Smith like his own son, something Adams’ father also confirmed when he spoke with KOIN 6 News shortly after Adams was arrested.

Detectives interviewed Adams several times. At first, Adams claimed that Smith may have fallen or hit a table. He explained that while he was in the kitchen, he heard a “banging noise” and found Smith down on the ground, according to court documents. Adams told detectives that when he reportedly found Smith the boy was not crying or upset so he gave him a bottle and bath.

Adams said that while Smith was being dried off, the child defecated on the towel so he put the child to bed and texted the child’s mother to let her know Smith was reportedly unwell.

On September 23, detective re-interviewed Adams after getting more information from the state medical examiner’s office. During that interview, Adams told police that when his girlfriend went to work, he was in charge of watching Smith. Adams once again told police that he gave the child a bath and that the boy defecated on the towel.

“The defendant said the victim then gave him a ‘half-smile’ and the defendant felt the victim had defecated on purpose,” according to court documents. “The defendant said this made him angry.”

The state medical examiner’s office told detectives Adams’ theory of the child falling or hitting a table could not have resulted in injures that Smith had that resulted in his death.

A grand jury has charged Adams with felony murder, first-degree assault and criminal mistreatment.