A Champaign County man who pleaded guilty to the murder of a 4-year-old boy was sentenced Wednesday to life in prison with a chance for parole after 18 years.
Michael Stapleton, 25, also received three years on an additional burglary charge to run consecutively with the murder count, said Prosecutor Kevin Talebi.
Brett Jaynes II died Nov. 29 at Nationwide Children’s Hospital in Columbus after he was found unresponsive in his Gunn Street home in North Lewisburg earlier that day. Stapleton was living with Jaynes and his family in their home and was taking care of the boy and several other children at the time of the emergency call.
Investigators accused Stapleton of beating the boy to death. Stapleton apologized the the Jaynes family Wednesday.
“In my opinion, (Stapleton) was deceptive and not credible; and his version of events tried to minimize his conduct and … he still never accepted full responsibility for his conduct and the crime that he committed,” Talebi said.
Jaynes’ mother, Erika Grenzebach, agreed.
“Listening to his story about what happened and everything, I was just … this is ridiculous. I could tell it was a lie after a lie,” Grenzebach said. “I wish he would get the death penalty, which I know they don’t do that anymore.”
Grenzebach said her son Brett was “full of joy; he was the happiest little boy … just full of life.”
After the sentencing by Champaign County Common Pleas Court Judge Nick A. Selvaggio, Brett Jaynes II’s father, Brett Jaynes, said: “I walk through this life now wishing for my own death after my heart has been ripped from my chest. I can’t sleep. I can’t rest. All I do is think of little Brett.”
Talebi said this investigation and subsequent conviction was a “good example of teamwork from a number of different agencies.”
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