Charleston man convicted of scalding toddler

Wednesday, June 10, 2015
Wednesday a Charleston County jury found Reginald Bruce Taylor, Jr. of Charleston County guilty of Inflicting Great Bodily Injury to a Child.  Taylor will be sentenced at a later date.

On December 1, 2012, the two year old victim, son of Brianna Moore, was brought to MUSC suffering from second degree and third degree burns on his feet, lower calves, buttocks, and genitalia. The Defendant, Taylor, was the former boyfriend of Ms. Moore.

Earlier that day, Taylor was home alone with the victim and Taylor’s one year old son. The victim, who was being toilet trained, had an accident, and the Defendant ran scalding water in the tub and then immersed the young boy in the water. The hot water burned the child badly but Taylor never called 911.

The Defendant admitted under cross examination of Assistant Solicitor Jennifer Kneece Shealy that the boy’s the injuries occurred hours before the child was taken to MUSC. The Defendant claimed that he put the child in the bathtub and that the child turned on the hot water and burned himself. The young boy stayed in the hospital for one month and was released to a Foster Care mother who dealt with medically fragile children.

Dr. Carrie Busch, a Child Abuse Pediatric Fellow at MUSC, testified that she examined the child and concluded that the injuries could not have been accidental because of the location of the burns and the burn pattern. Dr. John Fox, a Resident at MUSC, testified that he was interning in the Emergency Department when the victim arrived at the hospital. He photographed the injuries of the child, noted the immersion pattern to his injuries, and discussed the pain medication administered to the victim while in the Emergency Department.

After leaving Foster Care, he lived with his paternal grandmother. Both the Foster Care mother and the paternal grandmother testified about the wounds to the victim, the necessity of pain medication, the wearing of burn suits by the child, and the loss of playful activities the child previously enjoyed. When the toddler left his grandmother’s care in November of 2014, and was returned to his mother’s custody, he was still unable to walk for any extended period of time.

Testimony during hearings this week revealed that Ms. Moore, the victim’s mother, was not cooperative with MUSC or with law enforcement and the Solicitor’s office. She was called as a defense witness. Assistant Solicitor Shannon Elliott stated, “The victim’s injuries were horrendous and tough to see. We are hoping for his full recovery and grateful that the jury saw the facts and the defendant as we did.”

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