LOGAN — A 30-year-old Logan man has denied killing a baby girl after being bound over for trial. Kyle T. Gooch told a court he was “not guilty” of aggravated murder, a capitol offense that could sentence him to death or life in prison if convicted.
Gooch was in 1st District Court Tuesday morning for a preliminary hearing. He also faces additional charges of aggravated kidnapping, a first-degree felony; aggravated assault and violating a protective order, both third-degree felonies; and other misdemeanors; in four other cases.
During more than two hours of testimony, prosecutor’s lead investigator explained how Gooch allegedly smothered and killed the baby on December 14, 2018. The girl was four days away from her 1st Birthday. She had bruises on her face and had vomited blood, when officers found her deceased in her crib, wrapped tightly in a blanket and lying face down.
As evidence, prosecutors showed photographs of the injuries on the baby’s body. They also described how Gooch was the only adult caring for the child at the time the death occurred, and never made any attempts to resuscitate her.
An autopsy report was presented as evidence that showed the victim had thirteen different blunt force injuries to the head. A physician also testified that the wounds were not accidental and consistent with abuse.
Police allege that Gooch was caring for the child and her two older siblings while the mother was gone picking up gifts for Christmas. He had been drinking a mix of cola and whiskey earlier in the afternoon.
Gooch did not speak during Tuesday’s hearing. His attorney, Rudy Bautista said he had encouraged the suspect not to testify.
Judge Angela Fonnesbeck ruled that prosecutors had provided sufficient evidence to show that the crime had occurred. She explained that she was not “prejudging the case,” but felt like the medical evidence was credible. She noted as part of her decision were the allegations that the suspect was the only adult home at the time of the baby’s death and that no lifesaving measures were attempted. She also highlighted that there had reportedly been around 30 minutes between when the child was found deceased and the calling of 911.
Bautista told the court they were considering whether or not to pursue a plea agreement with prosecutors. He asked the court for some time to discuss the case with defense experts.
Gooch was arrested July 30, 2019. He remains in jail, being held without bail.