Bryan Butts, 24, of Pecanwood Drive, had an initial court appearance Friday morning before Circuit Judge Bo Hollingsworth, who ordered him held without bond.
Assistant District Attorney Christina Kilgore said Butts was involved in a relationship with the child’s mother but was not related to the child in any way.
The child was taken to Regional Medical Center in Anniston May 3 for treatment of injuries consistent with blunt force trauma. The child died the same day, Kilgore said.
The child had bruising on his face, neck, chest, stomach and back, as well as a lacerated liver.
The warrant states that the child was beaten with “hands, fists and feet,” Kilgore said.
Butts was arrested by Oxford police Thursday night and was originally booked into the Oxford City Jail. He was transferred to the Talladega County Metro Jail following his hearing Friday morning.
Kilgore said the child’s mother was asleep at the time of the beating, and had not been charged with any crime.
Kilgore said Butts is being charged with a capital offense because the victim in this case was less than 14 years old. The case will be set for a preliminary hearing in District Court, where the judge will determine if there is enough evidence to bind over the case to a grand jury.
A conviction for capital murder carries a penalty of life in prison without
the possibility of parole or death by lethal injection.