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No motive found in tot's fatal stabbing


No motive found in tot's fatal stabbing

November 24, 2004

Leslie Fulbright

San Fransisco Chronicle

Detectives investigating the stabbing death of a Richmond toddler said Tuesday they might never know what had led to the boy's death.

Police arrested the baby's 57-year-old adoptive father, Charles Thomas McEntire, in connection with the crime Monday; he remains jailed in Martinez in lieu of $1 million bail. He is expected to be charged today with murder.

Police say McEntire clearly stated to detectives that he committed the crime but offered no explanation why. Sgt. Mark Gagan said investigators might never answer that question.

"I don't think anything can justify or explain why this happened, what he was thinking and why he did it," he said.

The baby had lived with McEntire and his wife since birth, when he was taken from his biological mother, police said. The couple were his foster family before adopting him and changing his name.

McEntire called 911 at about 10:15 a.m. Monday to report a domestic disturbance and that his child had been hurt. Police found the baby in a bedroom of the house in the 500 block of South 30th Street. An autopsy revealed the 18-month-old baby, Charles Thomas McEntire III, had died of blood loss from stab wounds from a kitchen knife.

McEntire's wife and her 18-year-old son, who were home at the time of the killing, were questioned by police and released.

It is the second killing of a toddler within a month in Richmond. On Oct. 23, a 14-month-old girl was killed in the Iron Triangle. That crime remains unsolved, but the girl's mother and her boyfriend are considered suspects.

The two crimes are similar but unrelated, police said.

2004 Nov 24