Jacksonville, Fl - The death of a 4-year-old autistic boy is under investigation by the Baker County Sheriff's Office.
Chance Vanderpool was rushed to a local hospital on Tuesday where he was later pronounced dead. The manner and cause of death are under investigation.
"There are signs of trauma to the child. The child was an autistic child and it's been reported that the child did have some accidents such as falling and things", said Lt. Brad Dougherty.
The mother's boyfriend, Jonathan Register, was arrested on unrelated charges of Aggravated Child Abuse and Aggravated Battery on one of the siblings of the deceased child.
"There's four children in the home and one of the siblings of the deceased child had evidence of child abuse", said Dougherty.
As of now, Register is not charged in connection with the boy's death.
According to the incident report, Register woke up his girlfriend around 8:40am Tuesday, stating that Chance was unresponsive. Register told investigators that he had found the boy unresponsive at approximately 8:35am.
He put Chance in the bathtub to spray water on him in an attempt to wake him up but it was unsuccessful.
During an interview with detectives, Register said he had only spanked one of the children and that was for hitting another child in the head.
Chance had several injuries to his body, including what appeared to be a large cigar size injury consistent with a burn to the top of his left foot. The boy had previously been treated for a head wound in October. A DCF investigation determined it was an accidental injury when Chance was knocked down stairs by a 40lb. dog.
A 2-year-old brother was taken to the hospital because of what appeared to be dried blood around his nostrils, and blood on the top of his head. He also had bruising over several parts of his body.
The boy had also been seen for a skull fracture and broken arm after visiting his father, who lives in Georgia. The boy's mother says he was with Register before he went to Georgia. According to the mother, Register would not allow her to change the boy's diaper. She said Register would spank the children if they had an accident.
She attempted to leave twice but was not allowed to. She says she was not allowed to visit her parents and had her cell phone taken away by Register.
The investigation into the injuries and death of Chance Vanderpool is ongoing.