Father offers many theories on how Bryson Holman died, but prosecutors have only one: murder by child abuse

Chicago Sun-Times

Brandon Homan | Chicago Police

Brandon Homan | Chicago Police

Brandon Holman kept changing the story of how his 2-month-old son Bryson Holman ended up dead, Cook County prosecutors said in court Tuesday.

First he told detectives the boy may have choked on his own vomit; then he said the baby could have rolled off an air mattress; or that he may have dropped him on the floor and smothered him by accident, Assistant State’s Attorney Matthew Howroyd said.

Holman wasn’t done.

The 34-year-old also proposed that he might have rolled over his son while they were sleeping; or that he may have squeezed Bryson when he was crying; or the baby rolled out of his car seat and fell on the ground.

Bryson suffered a subdural hemorrhage, multiple broken ribs and a bi-lacerated liver, Howroyd said.

Bryson Holman | Facebook

Bryson Holman | Facebook

The child was healthy Friday evening when Holman and the baby’s mother took him to a restaurant, Howroyd said. Others who baby-sat him earlier that day also said he was fine and had no signs of injury.

But Bryson died with severe injuries while solely in Holman’s care for the first time on Saturday, Howroyd said.

Holman, of the 3200 block of West 83rd, was charged with murder. He was ordered held on a $1 million bond Tuesday.

Bryson was the son of Holman and his girlfriend.

Holman’s wife, who also has a newborn, did not know about his extramarital relationship. When Holman came home to his parents’ basement, where he lived, his family did not know he had Bryson with him, Howroyd said.

Holman’s girlfriend called early Saturday to check on Bryson and could hear him crying, Howroyd said.

But it was not until noon that Holman called paramedics to his home, where he stood on the porch holding Bryson in his arms, Howroyd said.

Bryson was “cold” to the touch and unresponsive. Rigor mortis had already begun to set in, Howroyd said.

The baby was pronounced dead on arrival at Advocate Christ Medical Center in Oak Lawn.

Nurses there noticed that Bryson had bruising on his neck; an abrasion to the right side of his head; bruising on his right forearm; discoloration of his left hand; and bruising to his right chest wall and abdomen, Howroyd said.

An autopsy Sunday found Bryson died of multiple injuries from abuse, and his death was ruled a homicide. The autopsy also revealed the injuries were not consistent with accidental injuries, Howroyd said.

An abuse investigation is pending against the baby’s father, Illinois Department of Children and Family Services spokeswoman Veronica Resa said earlier this week.

The agency has not had previous contact with the family, and the boy’s three siblings do not live with his father, Resa said.

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