Two-year-old Gavin Lowery died on Saturday from severe burns caused by scalding hot water. Police arrested Gavin’s 25-year-old mother, Lindsey McBride, and her boyfriend, John Harper, 32. They are currently facing charges of second-degree cruelty to a child, but the district attorney is considering second-degree murder charges against one or both suspects.
During an interview with police, McBride allegedly claimed Gavin had fallen down the stairs of their West Monroe home three days earlier. Shortly after he fell, she allegedly said that Gavin “accidentally burned himself” when he pulled a hot pot off the stove.
Gavin died eight days after he was taken to a Shreveport hospital with burns on his legs, genitals and buttocks, according to an arrest warrant obtained by PEOPLE. He was burned on his face, and old and new bruises covering his body were visible.
His death is still under investigation according to the Ouachita Parish Sheriff’s Office. According to news reports the charges have not yet been filed, and the mother and her boyfriend have not yet been arraigned or entered pleas.
McBride and Harper are being held in the Ouachita Correctional Center on a $65,000 bond.
Social services notified police after Gavin was admitted to a hospital in Shreveport with second-degree burns. The warrant states that he was “was moaning and appeared to be in severe pain” in the hospital.
Here are a few questions for police: was the child abused or neglected? Did he fall down the stairs or was he beaten? Why was he pulling a pot of hot water off of the stove? Or was he intentionally burned?
If he pulled the pot off of the stove and burned himself, is the mother responsible for his death? Or was it an accident?