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Sentence upheld for man who beat baby to death

9:55 AM, May 20, 2013   |    comments
(Joe Raedle/Getty Images)
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CLAYTON COUNTY, Ga. -- The Supreme Court of Georgia has upheld the murder conviction for a Clayton County man who beat his toddler son to death.

Jamall DeCarlos Mathis was found guilty in November 2010 of fracturing 17-month-old Ja 'Mari Myckahi Jones' skull. Mathis was convicted of several charges, including felony murder and aggravated battery, and was sentenced to life without parole plus 41 years in prison.

According to information presented in court, Mathis was 16 when his son was born. He provided no support for Ja 'Mari, which caused the baby's mother to file a complaint for child support.

On Sept. 16, 2009, about a month before the child support hearing, Ja 'Mari was found unresponsive in the home where Mathis was staying. The toddler was rushed to Southern Regional Hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

A medical witness testified Ja 'Mari had a "significant" skull fracture and a softball-sized knot on his head, injuries that were consistent with blows from a baseball bat. Two bats were found in the home, but they were never presented as evidence at trial.

After being found guilty, Mathis filed a motion for a new trial and was denied. He took his case to the state Supreme Court, which ruled Monday that the trial court was justified in finding Mathis guilty and sentencing him to life in prison.

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