(KMOV) -- Family members are demanding justice after a four-year-old boy was beaten to death at his home in South Roxana.
Madison County prosecutors charged a 33-year-old South Roxana man with first-degree murder in the deadly beating of his girlfriend's son, Jeremiah Bradford.
Sean Starwalt of the 600 block of Central Park Place in South Roxana allegedly hit the boy on the head, chest and abdomen. Starwalt was being held without bail on Monday.
The boy's mother, 34-year-old Patricia Cage of the same address, was being held in lieu of $150,000 bail on a charge of child endangerment. She allegedly knew of injuries Starwalt had inflicted on her son on Friday and Saturday but failed to get medical attention for him.
Jeremiah apparently died Saturday morning while his mother and Starwalt were driving him to a hospital. He was dead on arrival at Alton Memorial Hospital.
Neighbors who live in the same apartment complex said the couple had a volatile relationship.
“Sometimes it would get to the point where there were a few screams. Sometimes it was like thumping, or maybe she threw something at the wall,” Samantha Dugan said.
The incident marks the latest tragedy to strike Jeremiah Bradford’s family. The boy recently lost his biological father and grandmother.
Loved ones want to know how the boy’s mother could have denied her son immediate medical attention while the abuse allegedly happened at the hands of her boyfriend.
“It's sad that a young lady would pit her boyfriend in front of her son,” Neal Brown, Jeremiah’s cousin, said. “To be beaten like that, punched like that. No, we just want justice for him. And that's all we want."
If he is convicted of first-degree murder, Starwalt faces up to 60 years in prison. The victim’s mother faces up to five years in prison if she is convicted of child endangerment.