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Man charged with murder for crushing 6-month-old daughter’s skull

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Posted at 7:05 AM, May 19, 2012
and last updated 2012-05-19 02:11:05-04

By Eric Nusbaum, Web Reporter Q13 FOX News Online

BELLINGHAM, WA (KCPQ) - A registered member of the Lummi Tribe has been charged with second-degree murder in the death of his six-month-old daughter.

Lawrence Virgil Tom Jr. called 911 on May 13 to report that his infant daughter was not breathing, the FBI stated in court documents.

When Emergency Medical Services arrived at Tom's home in Bellingham, they transported the infant to the hospital where it was determined that she was suffering from a fractured skull. The young girl died from her injuries.

When the FBI agent interviewed Tom, he said that the previous week his daughter had rolled off the couch and hit her head and that she had also rolled off a mattress on the floor and hit her head.

The Whatcom Medical Examiner's Office autopsy confirmed that the girl's skull had been broken in several places. The medical examiner told the FBI that the injuries she suffered were not consistent with an accidental fall and he ruled the infant's death a homicide.

When the FBI agent interview Tom on May 15, he admitted that on May 10, while his live-in girlfriend was not home, he squeezed the young girl's head between his bicep and forearm and admitted that when he did so, he heard it make a noise. Tom was also alone at the home with another daughter who is 18-months old.

Tom admitted to the agent that he was "frustrated" that the infant would not stop crying and he was tired. He said he did not know he hurt her as badly as he had. The medical examiner then confirmed with the FBI agent that the injuries the infant suffered were "absolutely" consistent with the injuries that caused her death.

Charges against Tom were filed May 17; a court date has not yet been set.