COLUMBIA — The mother of a 2-year-old boy who died at University Hospital on Wednesday was arrested on suspicion of first-degree endangering the welfare of a child, but police are still looking for the boy’s father, Horace C. Johnson, according to a news release from the Columbia Police Department. Keyonda Lumpkin, 26, told police she was aware her child was being harmed over the course of several days but did not seek proper medical attention, according to the release.
Lumpkin was transported to Boone County Jail and is being held on $4,500 bond, according to the release.
Police are investigating the suspicious death of Cortez Johnson who was brought to University Hospital where efforts to resuscitate him failed Wednesday morning. The boy was brought to the hospital because he was unresponsive.
An examination found that Cortez Johnson had multiple suspicious injuries with various degrees of bruising, Columbia Police Capt. Brad Nelson said.
Horace C. Johnson, the father of the victim, was identified by family members as being responsible for some of the child’s injuries, Nelson said.
Johnson is still at large and police have established probable cause for his arrest in connection with the boy’s death, the release said.
Johnson and Lumpkin are not married. It is believed, however, that the two have been living together for a short time in the 1000 block of Elleta Boulevard, Nelson said.
Around 3:20 p.m. Wednesday, police located a 1996 charcoal Mercury they believed Johnson to be driving. He was not in the vehicle. The Major Crimes Unit is investigating the death, and police are trying to locate Johnson for questioning.
Johnson’s neighbor, Dehon Duff, 38, said neither Johnson nor Lumpkin — whom he knew only as AK-47 and K-Love — have lived on Elleta Boulevard for very long.
Duff said he spoke to Lumpkin a few weeks ago, but he has had no interaction with Johnson.
“I’m outside here every day and I haven’t seen him at all in a few weeks,” Duff said.
Duff said he thinks Lumpkin has at least one other son and one daughter.
“I hate that it happened. I got five kids myself. My baby is 14, man. I hope they hurry up and find him,” Duff said.
In March 2004, Johnson pleaded guilty to third-degree domestic assault, stealing of more than $500 but less than $25,000 and possession of 35 grams or less of marijuana, according to Missouri Case.net.
Throughout 2006, Johnson pleaded guilty to resisting or interfering with arrest, first-degree trespass and operating a vehicle on a highway without a valid license, two counts of receiving stolen property less than $500, third-degree assault and first-degree trespass, according to Missouri Case.net.
In August 2007, Johnson pleaded guilty to felony possession of controlled substance, according to Missouri Case.net.
Anyone with information is requested to submit tips on the CrimeStoppers Web site, 875tips.com or call Columbia Police at 874-7652.