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Judge to wait for child death case to head to grand jury before deciding on possible bond reduction

A judge is waiting for a child death case to head to the grand jury before deciding on possible bond reduction.
Published: Sep. 29, 2021 at 5:46 PM CDT
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ALEXANDRIA, La. (KALB) - Rapides Parish Judge Mary Doggett said she will wait for a first-degree murder case, which dates back to 2009, to head to a grand jury before she makes a decision about possibly reducing the bond of the man arrested.

O’Neil Wesley, 31 of Gulfport, MS, was arrested in June 2021 by the Alexandria Police Department for the May 8, 2009 death of three-year-old Kennedy Compton at a home on Laurel Street. Wesley was arrested on a first-degree murder warrant. The case hasn’t gone to a grand jury yet.

At a bond hearing on Wednesday, September 29, Det. Tanner Dryden with the Alexandria Police Department told the court that Compton was in the foster care system and was left for part of the day with Wesley, who was 19 at the time. According to Det. Dryden, Wesley had aged out of the foster care system, but still stayed at the home on Laurel Street that Compton was living at. Det. Dryden said Compton was sick that day and was left in the care of Wesley while Compton’s foster guardian and her sister were headed out of the area for a visit with a biological relative.

“The child was the only child at the residence with Mr. Wesley,” Det. Dryden told the court.

Det. Dryden said, at one point, the child woke up Wesley while he was sleeping, saying she was ill.

“The victim came to his bed, woke him up, stated she threw up,” said Det. Dryden. “Mr. Wesley gave her medicine. He went back to sleep. She woke him up again. He placed her on the toilet and went to watch TV. He heard a noise and went to check on her, she was on the floor lethargic.”

Det. Dryden said Wesley called the guardian to tell her what was going on.

“He never mentioned to her (the guardian) why she may have been in the condition she was in,” said Det. Dryden.

At some point after, Det. Dryden said Wesley called 911. First responders reported that Compton was unconscious and cool to the touch. She later died. An autopsy would list the manner of death as a homicide and note internal bleeding and shock. The case remained stuck, however, with no arrest.

This year, Det. Dryden took a closer look and re-interviewed Wesley. Det. Dryden said Wesley told him that he may have hit the girl and testified “he (Wesley) intended to knee the child in the stomach.”

Bond for Wesley is currently set at $500,000. Wesley said he could afford a bond between $50,000-$100,000. Judge Doggett said she would defer her decision on whether or not she would lower the bond until the case goes to a grand jury.

Wesley is being represented by Christopher LaCour. The case is being prosecuted by Kelvin Sanders.

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