Murdered baby's mother speaks out

Published: Feb. 9, 2012 at 10:29 PM CST|Updated: Feb. 23, 2012 at 5:29 PM CST
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A Shreveport father will spend the rest of his life behind bars for killing his 3 month old child in 2008.  Wednesday night a Caddo Parish Jury found Grady tTornton guilty of 2nd degree murder.

When he was only 3 months old, Ursula Brantley left their son, Terrell, with Thornton while she went out with friends. When she got home, she found her child unresponsive and rushed him to the hospital, not knowing what was wrong.

"I didn't know how bad things were until, basically until he went to jail," said Brantley.

Terrell died from a fractured skull.

Police charged her Thornton- with murder, and he later admitted that he harmed the child because he was angry with Brantley and frustrated that the baby wouldn't stop crying.

Brantley spent the next three and a half years trying to move on.  This week, she sat in a courtroom next to her own mother and relived every gut wrenching detail of the baby's extensive injuries.  However, that wasn't the only wound reopened.  Brantley also had to face her past relationship with Thornton.

"Sitting in a courtroom, I'm not just looking at the person who killed my child, who used to hit me. I'm also looking at the person that I stood in the kitchen with and slow danced to a song out of the blue while we cooked dinner for family," said Brantley.

When the judge announced the verdict, the Brantley family says they thought the decision was just, but it wasn't a victory.

"Really, neither family won. We got a verdict. That family lost a grandson and a son. We lost a grandson. So nobody won here," said Ursula Brantley's mother, Laverne Brantley.

Brantley says she has forgiven Thornton, but she has not spoken with him since his arrest 3.5 years ago, and at this point she has no plans to.

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