Christopher Preston, 24, Wilcox, appeared in Kearney County Court December 6 for a preliminary hearing for one charge of intentional child abuse resulting in a death. The Honorable Judge Timothy Hoeft presided over the proceedings with County Attorney Melodie Bellamy appearing for the state and Public Defender Tom Lieske representing the defendant.
Testimony from criminal investigator Michael Henry of the Nebraska State Patrol provided a timeline for events leading to the arrest of Christopher Preston on October 24. He was called to a hospital in Holdrege on October 1 to investigate a possible child abuse death. Six week old Zackary Preston was found unresponsive in a bed at his home in Wilcox and transported to the hospital in Holdrege where he was pronounced dead.
Investigators spoke with the family and conducted a search of the home. Preston told authorities the baby had awoken and become fussy. He gave the infant a bottle and tried to get him back to sleep. He laid the baby on its stomach and fell asleep. When he woke later, the child was unresponsive.
see December 12 Courier for full story