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Father Charged Following Death Of Infant Child

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GOLDSBORO, N.C. — Wayne County authorities have charged a Goldsboro teenager with murder following the death of his 14-month-old child.

Donald Purnell, 17, of Rifle Range Road, is accused of causing traumatic injuries to the abdomen of Malachi Jaahonelynn Edmundson last Friday. The infant was pronounced dead shortly after arriving at Wayne Memorial Hospital.

"This is indeed a tragedy," Wayne County Sheriff Carey Winders said. "A lot of people are affected by the loss of a small child. I compliment my detective division on their aggressiveness in this investigation."

According to Winders, who said the investigation has been hard and emotional for investigators, the incident happened just after 11 a.m. Friday. Wayne County EMS received a call that the child had stopped breathing.

A preliminary investigation revealed that Edmundson was staying at Purnell's home for the past week. Purnell and the baby's mother live at separate addresses.

The mother, also 17, also resides in Goldsboro.

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