Mother charged with murder of 5-month-old son

Burgandie Marquez ((Pinellas County Sheriff's Office))

When Burgandie Marquez's 5-month-old boy started having seizures the morning of Friday, Sept. 27, she tried to console him. Later that day, during a trip from Palm Harbor to see the baby's father in Pasco County, she said the baby's condition got worse, so she stopped to call 911.

While doctors worked to help the child, who was in critical condition with a severe brain bleed, investigators with the Pinellas County Sheriff's Office said Marquez, 30, admitted she had been "rough" with the 5-month-old the day before. As details of the "rough" treatment were revealed, the little boy's health deteriorated. He was taken off life support Sept. 30.

Now, his mother faces a charge of first-degree murder for his death.

Pinellas County sheriff's deputies said they were told by Marquez she became enraged during a phone call with the little boy's father on Thursday, Sept. 26. Around that time, she said she intentionally and forcefully jerked the boy up from the ground twice, causing his head to snap backward.

Investigators said Marquez then ran up and down the stairs of the home where she was staying in Palm Harbor, holding the boy in a way that allowed his head to bounce around without support. 

The next day, Marquez said her baby started having seizures. Later that day is when she began the trip to Pasco County but stopped to call for help. Paramedics airlifted the baby to St. Joseph's Hospital.

Marques was facing felony child abuse charges, but since the boy's death, the charge was upgraded to first-degree murder.