Man accused in Vancouver baby's death appears in court

By Paris Achen, Columbian courts reporter

Published:

Updated: August 7, 2013, 6:04 PM

 

A Portland man appeared Wednesday in Clark County Superior Court on suspicion of killing a 1-year-old girl whom he was baby-sitting at a home in Vancouver.

Andrew R. Hayes, 24, faces a charge of first-degree manslaughter at his Aug. 14 arraignment, related to the death of Amya Gibson. Judge David Gregerson held Hayes on $300,000 bail. Vancouver attorney Gerald Wear was appointed to defend Hayes.

Hayes was baby-sitting Amya on the morning of May 29 at the home of Amya and her mother, Emilee Smith, in the 1500 block of Ash Street in Vancouver, while Smith was at work. During that time, the baby sustained a blunt-force-trauma injury to her head, the circumstances of which remain unclear, according to a probable cause affidavit filed in court. The baby later died from the injury.

Hayes told Vancouver police investigators that the injury came from Amya falling off of a bed, which measured 21 inches high and stood on a carpeted floor.

However, an autopsy by the Clark County Medical Examiner’s Office determined that pooled blood in the baby’s brain was caused by blunt-force trauma and that the injury was inconsistent with a fall from a 21-inch-tall bed onto a carpeted floor.

Additional testing at Oregon Health & Science University found that the baby had a small bruise on her cerebellum, a part of the brain located on the lower back edge of the skull near the neck.

Hayes was arrested July 25 by the U.S. Marshals Service in Multnomah County, Ore., and extradited to Clark County.

Paris Achen: 360-735-4551; http://twitter.com/Col_Courts; http://facebook.com/ColTrends; paris.achen@columbian.com.