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Man charged in connection to abuse of 1-year-old in Ecorse

Posted at 8:44 AM, Sep 24, 2020
and last updated 2020-09-24 08:44:15-04

ECORSE, Mich. (WXYZ) — It was July when Ecorse police responded to a home and found a 1-year-old dead and his twin brother fighting for his life. Wednesday, the man relatives say they believe is responsible faced charges.

“Mr. Gibson, you are facing a charge here of child abuse 1st Degree,” said the Honorable Gregory Clifton as he arraigned 34-year-old James Gibson by video from the Michigan Department of Corrections

Gibson is in prison for a parole violation since his arrest after the death of 1-year-old Zyaire and the abuse of Zion. The twins' mother, Lisa Reed, of Ecorse, is also in jail without bond charged on July 30 with first-degree child abuse.

Investigators tell 7 Action News they suspect she failed to stop the abuse, but they suspect Gibson physically hurt the little ones.

Family has voiced frustration he wasn’t charged in July too.

“It has been extremely exhausting and traumatic. I slept well for the first time Friday night after learning Kym Worthy was going to bring charges,” said Jennifer Reed, an aunt to the twins.

"Obviously it hurts and they deserve justice,” said Renee Guthrie, an aunt of the twins.

The twins' aunts say they are focusing on loving Zion, who survived, and is now out of the hospital in the loving care of extended family, while grieving for Zyaire.

They felt relief when police and the prosecutor during Gibson’s arraignment said they expected murder charges would be filed once Zyaire’s autopsy is complete.

Police say they are meticulously gathering evidence through the autopsy, creating a timeline of when injuries happened so they can be certain as they build their case.

“It is why I do this job. I do this job for children. I want to make it safe,” said Inspector Tim Sassak, of the Ecorse Police Department. “The only solace the family will have is seeing the people who committed these crimes paying the price.”

The twins’ aunts say they have a plea for the man they believe hurt the little boys they love.

“Tell the truth. Be honest. That is the only honorable thing you have left to do," Guthrie said. "Save us the pain of watching this play out while you deny what the facts and evidence are going to show."

“It is devastating to know what these poor babies went through,” Reed said.

For now, James Gibson will be locked up without bond awaiting his next hearing.