Mother, Stepfather Accused in Child's Death Appear in Court

LAS VEGAS -- The mother and stepfather accused in the beating death of a 7-year-old boy made their first appearance in court Tuesday.

Markiece Palmer, 34, and Dina Palmer, 27, are both charged with murder, child abuse and neglect in the death of Roderick "RJ" Arrington, Jr. The boy died on Nov. 30. The Palmers appeared in court and were assigned public defenders. Both are being held at the Clark County Detention Center.

According to the police report, Arrington had been beaten on consecutive days with objects that included a belt, spatula and wooden paddle and had bruises and open wounds on his body. Markiece Palmer told police he shook the boy hard and that Roderick ran downstairs, slipped and hit his head.

The Palmers told police Roderick had been beaten because he lied about reading the bible and had not finished his homework, the report said.

Arrington's grandmother, Latanza Harris, arrived in Las Vegas Tuesday. She said it is not in her daughter's character to hurt a child.

"I'm really, really leaning on the Lord for strength right now. This is my daughter, my first, my oldest grandson. He lived with me."

The investigation into this incident remains ongoing. Anyone with any information concerning this crime is urged to contact Metro Police's Abuse and Neglect Section at 702-828-3364 or Crime Stoppers by phone at 702-385-5555 or on the internet at www.crimestoppersofnv.com.


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