Delaware County

Toddler Found Dead in Bathtub, Mother's Boyfriend Charged With Endangerment

EDITOR'S NOTE: The details of this case are graphic and may be upsetting for some readers.

A Delaware County man was arrested Tuesday after his girlfriend’s son was found dead in a bathtub.

Daniel Grafton, 31, is charged with reckless endangerment and endangering the welfare of a child.

Grafton was babysitting his girlfriend’s 2-year-old son Mason Hunt Tuesday inside their apartment on the 400 block of Chester Pike in Norwood, Pennsylvania. At the time, Grafton’s girlfriend was working downstairs at a doctor’s office in the same building.

Grafton’s girlfriend went back into the upstairs apartment around 3:33 p.m. to bring snacks for him and Mason, according to a criminal complaint. At that point, Grafton met her to grab the snacks and told her Mason was in the bathtub. Grafton’s girlfriend then went back downstairs and continued working.

Around 4:40 p.m. Grafton walked downstairs into the doctor’s office carrying Mason’s limp body in his arms while screaming the boy wasn’t breathing, according to the criminal complaint. Grafton told his girlfriend as well as Dr. Patricia Sutton, who was working at the time, that he had left Mason alone in the tub to grab cheese curls and when he returned to the bathroom he found the boy lying face down in the tub, not breathing.

Sutton performed CPR on the boy and noticed several bruises on his body, face, head, eye, abdomen and extremities, according to the criminal complaint. The doctor also told police the boy’s lips were blue, his skin was cold to the touch and she couldn’t feel a pulse.

"His color was poor," Dr. Sutton told NBC10. "One pupil was dilated."

Police and paramedics quickly arrived at the apartment and took the boy to the hospital. He was pronounced dead at 5:52 p.m.  Doctors at the hospital also noticed several injuries and deep bruises on the boy’s body, according to the criminal complaint.

Sutton, who hired the toddler's mother when she was pregnant with him, wished she could have done more.

"I can't even tell you how much we've been affected by it," she said. "It's going to be very hard to go back to that same place." 

Grafton was taken into custody and interviewed by detectives. During the interview, Grafton showed the detectives a picture he had taken with Mason on his cellphone on Monday, a day before Mason’s death. Police noticed that Mason had no obvious bruises on his face in the picture. During the interview, police determined Grafton found Mason lying face down at 3:45 p.m. but did not seek any medical help until 4:40 p.m., according to the criminal complaint.

Grafton is currently being held at the Delaware County Prison without bail. The charges against him could be upgraded after an autopsy on the boy is completed.
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