Father charged in daughter’s death

Published 6:45 pm Wednesday, December 23, 2009

CONWAY — A Conway father is behind bars charged with the murder of his daughter.

According to Conway Police Chief Billy Duke, Jermaine O’Brian Freeman, 26, of Wood Court stands charged with the death of his 13-month old daughter, Khisha Lachelle Freeman.

Duke said at 1:20 a.m. Sunday he was alerted by Northampton County Central Dispatch who advised him about the child who had been brought by her mother, Tenisha Boyd, at 10:30 p.m. on Saturday to Roanoke-Chowan Hospital in Ahoskie. Duke said the attending physician performed tests on the child in which the results had indicated foul play.

“When I got there the child had been pronounced dead,” he said.

Duke said with the assistance of the Northampton County Sheriff’s Office, he was able to interview both Boyd and Freeman. Khisha’s body was transported to Pitt Memorial Hospital for an autopsy.

“Those preliminary results indicated the child had died of blunt force trauma (in the head area),” he said.

Duke said he conducted two more follow up interviews with the mother from which Freeman was developed as a suspect.

Duke said he was able to collect evidence which he transported to the State Bureau of Investigation lab in Raleigh.

After speaking with 6B District Attorney Valerie Asbell, Duke drew warrants for Freeman’s arrest.

Upon being served those warrants on Wednesday, Freeman was behind bars at Bertie Martin Regional Jail on an outstanding warrant (failure to appear in court) with a bond of $5,000.

Now, Freeman is held without bond on the charges of murder and felony child abuse inflicting serious injury.

Freeman’s first court appearance is scheduled for Monday.

According to the North Carolina Department of Corrections Web site, Freeman has a list of convictions, including misdemeanor charges for common law forgery and common law uttering and resisting an officer. He was also convicted in Gates County with felony assault inflicting serious body injury in 2008.

According to the obituary from Wilder’s Funeral Home, the funeral for Khisha will be held at 2 p.m. on Sunday at Roanoke Chapel Baptist Church Cemetery in Jackson.

Duke thanked the Northampton County Sheriff’s Office for their assistance.

The last murder in Conway occurred in May 2001.