Rocky Mount Man to Spend 30 Years Behind Bars for Killing Infant
Rocky Mount, VA - A Rocky Mount man will spend 30 years behind bars for killing a 3-month-old baby.
Xavier Craighead was sentenced on Monday in Franklin County Circuit Court.
A judge sentenced Craighead to 40 years, with the sentence suspended after he hits 30 years behind bars.
The prosecution asked for a stiffer punishment than the guidelines recommended and the judge agreed.
An autopsy showed the baby suffered a fractured skull during while he was with Craighead last May.
Craighead was dating the baby's mother at the time.Craighead pleaded guilty to the charges back in April.
Two child abuse charges were dropped in exchange for the plea.
Rocky Mount, VA - A Rocky Mount man will spend 30 years behind bars for killing a three-month-old baby.
A judge sentenced Xavier Craighead Monday afternoon in Franklin County Circuit Court to 40 years -- with 10 years suspended.
An autopsy showed the baby suffered a fractured skull while he was with Craighead in May 2013.
Craighead was dating the baby's mother at the time.
Monday's sentencing was a very short hearing for the 21-year old with just Craighead's mother testifying.
She was brought in to illustrate the difficult upbringing Craighead had... bouncing from caregiver to caregiver beginning at the age of three.
Craighead's lawyer insisted it wasn't a reach for leniency but for context.
The Commonwealth didn't want leniency either asking for the judge to go above the 22-year guideline for second degree murder.
"It surprised me that he went as far above the guidelines as he did. I had hoped that he would exceed the guidelines some but the fact that he exceeded them by eight and a half years was a surprise but a pleasant surprise that I think was merited in this case,"said Commonwealth's Attorney, Tim Allen.
Judge Alexander said, in court, the circumstances surrounding the murder were, "almost unspeakable".
Craighead read from a prepared statement as well - which included an apology to the boy's family