State to seek death penalty for father accused of beating infant son to death

Updated:

Loading
OSCEOLA COUNTY, Fla. —

The State Attorney's Office wants a St. Cloud man accused of beating his 3-month-old son to death to be executed.

Paperwork was filed seeking the death penalty for Larry Darnell Perry.

Police said Ayden Perry was beaten to death in his father's St. Cloud apartment.

Archie Guzman is one of Perry's neighbors.

"He seemed cool. Since I have been here I never saw him snap, not even to his stepdaughter or his wife," said Guzman.

 Guzman said he used to watch Ayden for Perry and his girlfriend

"He was a cute little kid, he looked like both of them," said Guzman.

Investigators said Perry beat the infant in his home. Guzman said the beating was so loud, she could hear it next door.

"I was coming into the kitchen and all of a sudden I heard, 'boom,'" said Guzman.

Guzman said she believes prosecutors should not be seeking the death penalty in the case, but should instead seek life in prison for Perry.

"He didn't mean to, I can feel it, because he just snapped," said Guzman.

According to the police incident report, Perry said he hurt his baby and couldn't take it anymore.

Another of Perry's neighbors she believes prosecutors are making the right move in seeking the death penalty.

"The child died, he should die," said the neighbor, who did not wish to be identified. "Why should we support somebody that has killed a small child, you know, his own flesh and blood?"

WFTV legal analyst Bill Sheaffer said getting the death penalty is not a sure thing for prosecutors, but he said if they get a murder conviction they can present several strong arguments to get the death penalty.

"This is really no gamble for the state, because even if they don't get the death penalty, this guy is going to jail for the rest of his life," said Sheaffer.

The case is expected to start later than originally anticipated because now the defense needs to find a public defender qualified for death penalty cases.

Previous Story:  Police: Man told 911 operator he injured infant son who later died