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Police continue inquiry in death

By Diana Baldwin Published: August 15, 2007
EDMOND — A 5-year-old boy died from blunt force trauma to the head, the state medical examiner said Tuesday.

Exactly what caused the injury to Declan Stewart won't be determined for a couple of weeks while the case is being investigated, said Kevin Rowland, medical examiner spokesman.

The boy's mother, Janet Stewart, called 911 Saturday evening after the boy was hurt. Edmond firefighters and police both responded to the family's home at 2001 Hardy Drive and were told the boy fell in his closet and then hit his head on a bed. His injuries originally were labeled as accidental and paramedics believed the boy just had a concussion, said Glynda Chu, police spokeswoman.

Repeated attempts by The Oklahoman to contact family members were unsuccessful.

Oklahoma County District Attorney David Prater is calling the boy's death suspicious. He is waiting on the medical examiner decision and Edmond police investigation before commenting further, the prosecutor said Tuesday.

Declan Stewart was at the center of a child abuse investigation in January 2006. When he was 3 years old, he was placed in protective custody after he was taken for medical treatment for injuries to his genital area and dehydration, according to a police report.

Department of Human Services officials said they won't comment on any case involving a child unless criminal charges are filed.

Edmond police were continuing their investigation into the boy's death Tuesday, Chu said.

"Detectives have been assigned the case,” Chu said. "Our detectives have been consulting with the medical examiner's office.”

Police have released little information about the death. They also refused Tuesday to release a recording of the 911 call about the injured boy.


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