Dexter parents charged in death of 5-month-old son

Sunday, May 29, 2005

Southeast Misssourian

DEXTER, Mo. -- A Dexter couple face murder and child abuse charges in the death of their 5-month-old son, Stoddard County Major Case Squad officials said Saturday.

Ben Handy, 23, is charged with second-degree murder, abuse of a child resulting in death, endangering the welfare of a child and two counts of armed criminal action. Dara Vaughn, 22, is charged with child abuse resulting in death, endangering the welfare of a child and armed criminal action. Both were being held Saturday in the Stoddard County Jail. The charges stem from an investigation that began when Dexter police responded to 1026 Woodland Drive in Dexter at 4:48 a.m. Wednesday. The boy was transported to a local hospital and then flown to St. Louis Children's Hospital, where he died. The Stoddard County Major Case Squad was activated after an autopsy was performed, officials said.

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