Police arrest man for murder of toddler

Terrence Porter (Image via Indianapolis Metro Police Department)
Man charged in toddler's death
Arrest in toddler's murder
Arrest in toddler's death

INDIANAPOLIS (WTHR) - Metro police arrested a man for the murder of a 17-month-old toddler.

Twenty-four-year-old Terrence Porter faces charges of murder, neglect of a dependent resulting in death and battery resulting in death of a person under 14.

Emmanuel Jenkin was just 17 months old when prosecutors say violence took his young life.

"That was my heart. He was always happy," Emmanuel's grandmother Shalynn Stump said. "It just makes me sick to my stomach knowing somebody could actually do this to an innocent child."

Emmanuel Jenkins (Picture courtesy: Shalynn Stump, Emmanuel’s grandma)

The boy died over the weekend at Riley Hospital for Children at IU Health after suffering serious injuries at the Rockwood Apartments off Rockville Road. Police say that's the home of his mom's boyfriend, Terrence Porter.

Metro Police got a 911 call from there Friday for a man having chest pains.
But they discovered Porter was having a panic attack and he told police his girlfriend's son wasn't breathing.

"He was really just downplaying the whole situation," Stump said. "He just made up some bogus story and I wasn't going for it."

According to court documents, Porter eventually admitted that last Wednesday, he picked up Emmanuel because he was crying and was "rougher with him than I meant to be."

Investigators say Porter also admitted to violently shaking the toddler and dropping him on a hard tile floor. Police say they found blood on a wall, on a floor and in the pack-and-play where Emmanuel was sleeping.

Yet prosecutors say Porter never took the boy to a doctor. It wasn't until the next day, when he was sick, listless and stopped breathing, that Porter called 911.

"He couldn't even defend himself. So...I'm just sick. For you to hurt my grandbaby, my first grandbaby," Stump said, shaking her head.

"Everything you do revolves around your children when you're a parent. So it's like, now that he isn't here, I just don't know what to do," Emmanuel's mother said. "He was a baby. Babies cry. They scream. Just why?"

Emmanuel's mom said that Porter had been violent with her before, but said never her son. Now, this family is planning a toddler's funeral.

"He filled everybody's life with joy. We're going attend every court date and make sure he gets the justice that he deserves," Stump said.

Terrence Porter's initial court hearing is Thursday morning in Marion County.

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