A 5-year-old was launched headfirst from a third-story balcony when her mother’s boyfriend believed she was “a demon,” police said.
Jarick Willis, a 32-year-old from Las Vegas, was charged with attempted murder, child abuse or neglect, and domestic battery after police said he threw a girl off a balcony Sunday.
Officers found the 5-year-old landed face-first on the gravel below the balcony. She was unconscious when police arrived and was taken to a hospital.
The girl was severely injured with a fractured forearm, pelvis, leg and rib, police said. She also had a collapsed lung and lacerated liver. Police did not say her current condition.
Willis had dated the girl’s mother since March, her mother told police. He had come over to their apartment for the first time Saturday, and he stayed the night after his car didn’t work, police said.
That night, he told the girl’s mother that the 5-year-old was “full of bad spirits.” The next afternoon, he said the girl had “bad entities” and he “believed she was a demon,” police said.
The mother told her boyfriend not to talk about her daughter that way again because she has a medical condition that was not disclosed by police.
Later in the night, police said the mother found Willis leaning over the balcony while her son screamed that he had thrown the girl from the third story.
“She looked over the balcony and noticed (the girl) lying motionless, face first, in the gravel,” police said. “(The mother) told detectives she believed (Willis) had just killed (her daughter.)”
The mother told police she was fearful for the other children’s lives, grabbed a gun from her purse and confronted Willis while he took a shower. She shot through the glass shower door twice, and Willis attacked her from behind, biting her on the back, police said.
When police arrived, the mother told officers she shot Willis and he had jumped from the balcony, then ran back into the apartment. Police followed a trail of blood and found Willis and arrested him.
He had a gunshot wound on the left side of his abdomen and was “bleeding heavily,” police said. He was taken to a trauma center and was in critical but stable condition.
“(The mother) reiterated several times to detectives she was in fear for her life and her children’s lives,” police said. “She mentioned if he could kill a 5-year-old child, he would kill all of them.”