Pa. toddler fatally beaten by man, 35

June 1, 2009 8:05:20 AM PDT
A one-year-old northeastern Pennsylvania girl is dead after allegedly being beaten by her mother's boyfriend. Officials say the boyfriend, 35-year-old Lamont Cherry, assaulted the child, Zalayia McCloe, fracturing her skull, while he was home alone with her Friday evening. The girl's mother, Christa Smith, and the baby's aunt were out submitting job applications.

The youngster was airlifted to Geisinger Medical Center in Danville where she died Sunday morning.

Cherry was arrested Friday night and jailed at the Luzerne County Correctional Facility in lieu of $75,000 bail. He currently is charged with simple assault, aggravated assault, and endangering the welfare of a child.

A preliminary hearing is scheduled for June 8.

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