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INFANT DEATH: Teen Father In County Jail

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Des Moines police say the father of a child killed last week is now in the Polk County Jail.

Seventeen-year-old Drew Weehler-Smith was charged Monday with first degree murder in the death of his son, four-month-old Gabriel McFarland.

The charge automatically waves Weehler-Smith’s case to adult court. He was originally charged with neglect of a dependent person and in custody of the juvenile justice system.

Officials charged him with murder after results of the autopsy showed McFarland died from abusive head trauma. He also faces a charge of child endangerment resulting in death.

Police say the baby died after Weehler-Smith left him alone last Tuesday. The baby’s mother had left him in the care of his father while she ran errands.

Weehler-Smith made his initial court appearance Tuesday morning. His preliminary hearing is scheduled for May 9th.


    • huh?

      what would make you think that? the baby was left in his care. he was seen leaving the apartment while the baby was still there, but, before the mom and her friend got back.

      • north

        neighbor comes over and sees dad with baby. neighbor leaves, calls mom and tells her to come home. neighbor returns to apartment and tells dad to leave. dad leaves. neighbor is now alone with baby. mom returns to see dad leaving. mom gets home to see baby alone, gets mad, and takes it out on the baby.

      • Huh?

        North, WHERE did you hear all of that?
        According to the video interview with the mother….
        Dad came over. Mom and best friend left.
        Best friend asked Mom is she trusted Dad with baby.
        Mom said, ‘kinda’, why don’t you go back there and stay with them until I get back.
        Best friend shows up in time to see Dad leave, can’t tell if he has baby or not.
        Best friend can’t get into apartment building as it is a security buiding and she doesn’t have a key.
        Mom arrives. Dad has her key. She has neighbor let her in.
        Baby is blue and non responsive.
        I have not seen any of what you are portraying in any of the articles or blogs here or on KCCI.

      • north

        without a confession or hard physical evidence, it seems we have her word against his. there is more to this story and mom is a known liar. did you see her interview on tv13? I can not judge based on her word.

  • Chris

    Mom should be charged with neglect as well. She left the baby alone with a man she obviously didn’t trust herself. They both have criminal histories and neither one had any business raising a baby.

  • Laura

    I too don’t think we have all the facts about the timeline of the baby’s death… The truth shall come out as it progresses – the autopsy said abusive head trauma – it could very easily be a case of having the glider going to fast and bouncing the head back and forth for over an hour – some say dad was told to leave by others and some say dad was already gone when they returned to the apartment – very tragic regardless

  • north

    let me see if I got this right… baby has three moms. father? has two moms? please tell me the birth mom has a father! if not, i’ll leave the fatherless society discussion to the rest of you. my gut tells me that the guy charged in this case is not the real father. my gut also tells me the birth mom was, and most likely still is on drugs. I wonder what the autopsy drug screen will show.

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