FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Monday, July 17, 2017
Coney Island Man Indicted for Killing his 16-Month-Old Daughter
Child Suffered Fractured Skull and Swelling of Brain;
Defendant Assaulted Mother as she Took Unresponsive Victim from his Home
Acting Brooklyn District Attorney Eric Gonzalez today announced that a 19-year-old man from Coney Island has been indicted on murder, assault and other charges for causing the death of his 16-month-old daughter, Nylah Lewis. He was previously charged with assault and charges were upgraded following the child’s death.
Acting District Attorney Gonzalez said, “This father was supposed to protect his innocent baby daughter but instead he allegedly violently and senselessly took her life and then assaulted her mother when she tried to come to her rescue. I intend to hold him fully accountable for this unspeakable crime.”
The Acting District Attorney identified the defendant as Shaquan Taylor, 19, of Coney Island, Brooklyn. The defendant was arraigned today before Brooklyn Supreme Court Justice Vincent Del Giudice on a 10-count indictment charging him with second-degree murder, first-degree manslaughter, first- and second-degree assault and other charges. He was ordered held without bail and to return to court on July 27, 2017. The defendant faces up to 25 years to life in prison if convicted of the top count.
The Acting District Attorney said that, according to the investigation, the defendant took custody of his daughter Nylah starting on June 16, 2017. On June 18, Father’s Day, he contacted the toddler’s 17-year-old mother via Facebook Messenger and asked her to pick Nylah up from his West 32nd Street home.
The mother found the child unresponsive and told the defendant to call 911, but he refused, the investigation found. The mother took Nylah out of the apartment and the defendant allegedly struck her, handed the child to a bystander and continued to assault the mother, who had an order of protection against him based on a previous incident, according to the indictment.
Nylah sustained a linear skull fracture and swelling of the brain, as well as swelling and bruising to the face and body. She was on life support in Maimonides Medical Center until June 23, 2017, when she succumbed to her injuries and died. The mother sustained cuts and swelling to her eye.
When interviewed by detectives, the defendant claimed that Nylah fell from the bed. Her injuries are allegedly inconsistent with such a fall.
The case is being prosecuted by Senior Assistant District Attorney Victoria Nunez, of the Brooklyn District Attorney’s Special Victim’s Bureau, and Assistant District Attorney Kelly Casey, Deputy Bureau Chief, under the overall supervision of Assistant District Attorney Miss Gregory, Chief.
An indictment is an accusatory instrument and not proof of a defendant’s guilt.