Boyfriend now charged after teen mom's baby dies

Rowan Bracci (Source: WCSC)
Rowan Bracci (Source: WCSC)
Amber Lynn Bracci (Source: WCSC)
Amber Lynn Bracci (Source: WCSC)
John Weaver (Source: WCSC)
John Weaver (Source: WCSC)

RIDGEVILLE, SC (WCSC) - The second suspect in the death of a 16-month-old Dorchester County boy is behind bars Monday afternoon.

John Weaver, 20, surrendered to police around 2:00pm. Weaver is being represented by high-profile defense attorney Andy Savage. Two other people, believed to be Weaver's family members, were also present.

Weaver did not answer any questions on his way into the jail. Weaver was indicted last Thursday on a charge of homicide by child abuse in the death of his girlfriend's son, 16-month-old Rowan Bracci.

Also under indictment on the same charge is the toddler's mother, 19-year-old Amber Lynn Bracci of Ridgeville. Bracci has been in jail since her arrest earlier in January.

The coroner's office says an autopsy showed Rowan Bracci died of a closed head injury at the hands of another person or persons.

The solicitor's office says Weaver will mostly likely have a bond hearing Wednesday afternoon. Bracci was denied bond at her first hearing.

Bracci told deputies she called EMS after she saw her son's eyes rolling into the back of his head. Police say she admitted hitting her son in the head days before he was taken to the hospital.

The Dorchester County Sheriff's department has been investigating the death of Rowan Bracci since Jan. 9. The Sheriff's Office held a press conference in Summerville Jan. 13 to announce the charges.

Earlier this month, before Bracci was arrested on homicide by child abuse charges, she went on TV to tell her story.

"I went in there and picked my son up out of bed at 10:30 in the morning and he was limp," Bracci said on WCSC-TV in Charleston. "His eyes were closed and he was not responsive."

Bracci called EMS, and Rowan died at MUSC two days later.

Doctors said Rowan's retinas were detached with severe hemorrhaging behind the eyes. Doctors couldn't count the amount of vessels. The doctor also said there had been signs of abuse days prior to this incident.

"I loved my son with all my heart," Bracci said. "I may not have been a perfect mother. There are things that I regret."

The Dorchester County Coroner's Office said Thursday that the baby died as a result of homicide after sustaining a closed head injury at the hands of another person or persons. Preliminary autopsy results were released Thursday morning.

Bracci is being held in the Dorchester County Detention Center.

Copyright WCSC 2011. All rights reserved.