Branch County dad charged in 5-month-old’s death

Target 8
An undated courtesy photo of Coleman Royer, Luna Royer-King and Ashley King.

An undated courtesy photo of Coleman Royer, Luna Royer-King and Ashley King.

COLDWATER, Mich. (WOOD) — A Branch County man has been charged in the death of his 5-month-old daughter.

Coleman Royer was arrested Thursday and is currently being held at the Branch County Jail.

Royer, 28, is charged with homicide in connection to the Feb. 14 death of Luna Royer. He is also facing two felony child abuse charges.

Coleman Royer
An Oct. 24, 2019, mug shot of Coleman Royer.

Luna Royer-King was 5 months old when she died at C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital in Ann Arbor, two days after she reportedly fell from a swing.

Target 8 first reported this story in April after obtaining hospital records.

The records showed Luna had suffered at least nine broken ribs, described as “fractures of differing age” in her short life, along with a broken left elbow.

An MRI found “worsening cerebral edema,” or water on the brain, often associated with abusive head trauma.

“Findings are consistent with child abuse,” doctors at Mott wrote in a medical report.

NOT SIZED luna royer king 042919_1556559182520.JPG.jpg
An undated courtesy photo of Luna Royer.

Luna’s mother, Ashley King, told Target 8 back in April, that she had left her baby for about three hours with the child’s father and her boyfriend, Royer, at the home they shared in Coldwater.

“He called me and he told me, ‘Hey, Luna just fell out of her swing,’” Ashley King said. “The next sentence out of his mouth is, ‘Where are you?’”

When she got home a few minutes later, Luna seemed fine to her, she said. But not long after, Luna started moving and acting strange.

The couple took Luna to the local emergency room. The next morning, she was transferred to Mott in Ann Arbor.

Luna died the next day.

Target 8 spoke to Coleman Royer earlier this year. He admitted he was with Luna when she fell from the swing, but that she was fine when he left her with her mom to play basketball.

He denied any involvement in her death and says the mom and grandmother keep changing their stories.

“They’re treating everybody as a suspect,” Royer said of police. “That’s how that goes. They have to if there is a child’s death.”

When asked about the broken bones, he said: “I’ll be honest with you, I can’t tell you where that comes from. I just can’t. I have no idea.”

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