Adrian Langlais was taken to a Fort Worth hospital on his second birthday horribly bruised, his head swollen, with a film coating his eyes, a paramedic testified Wednesday at the murder trial of the man accused of killing the toddler.
Christian Michael Tyrrell, 24, of Fort Worth, is on trial this week, charged with capital murder of a person under 10. If convicted, he could be sentenced to life in prison. The death penalty has been waived.
“You’re going to hear [Adrian] was covered in bruises when they brought him to the hospital,” Kelly Meador, the Tarrant County assistant district attorney prosecuting the case, told the jury. “You’re going to hear that he was bleeding inside his eyes.”
She said this would not be an easy case for the jury to hear.
“There was no birthday party for Adrian Langlais,” Meador said. “There wasn’t even one planned.”
Tyrrell, the 24-year-old boyfriend of Adrian’s mother, Jessica Langlais, was indicted on a capital murder warrant accusing him of inflicting the fatal injuries on Adrian by striking him with or against a hard surface before his death on March 19, 2015. Two years after Adrian’s death, in May, Jessica Langlais, 31, was indicted, accused of doing nothing while her son was being brutalized.
The three-count indictment accuses Langlais of causing her son’s death, committing murder with the underlying offense of injury to a child, and injury to a child by omission by failing to seek medical attention for him.
Adrian was hospitalized March 18 and died the next day of what the medical examiner later ruled was head trauma.
Adrian’s father, Ulises Herrera, testified the family elected to donate some of the child’s organs.
“He was so easy, independent, sweet,” Herrera testified.
He also said Jessica was often more concerned with being with her friends than with taking care of their child, and said he was upset that Jessica had gone to work and not taken Adrian to the hospital sooner.
“He was hurt, he was swollen and his eyes were bad,” Herrera said. “He didn’t need to be anywhere else except a hospital.”
Meador warned the jury that they were not going to believe the defendant’s excuse.
Tyrrell’s story was that Adrian had fallen head-first from a toddler’s bed two or three feet from the floor.
“You’re going to hear that nothing [Tyrrell] said makes any sense,” Meador said. “You’re going to hear that Adrian Langlais was murdered by his mother’s boyfriend and his mother did nothing about it.”
One of the paramedics who answered the injury call about 1 p.m. on March 18 at a residence in the 1900 block of Cedar Tree Drive testified that Tyrrell seemed different from others with injured children.
“We’re used to parents running out holding their children in their arms,’ said Amber Branham, who works for MedStar. “His demeanor never changed. He was pretty laid-back and calm. Typically, we spend half our time treating the family and trying to keep them calm.”
Branham said Tyrrell did seem frantic when he called Adrian’s mother to tell her that her son needed to go to the hospital. But when they got off the phone, Tyrrell became calm again, Branham said.
Branham testified that she and her partner stayed at the house 12 minutes, then rushed Adrian to Cook Children’s Medical Center. Adrian was exhibiting signs typical of a brain bleed, she said.
“It was hard to determine where there weren’t bruises,” Branham said.
Tyrrell’s story that Adrian had fallen two or three feet onto carpeting did not make sense to her, she testified, adding, “I went back to the hospital because I felt bad for the child knowing it was his birthday and I just wanted to be there for him.
“I bought him a teddy bear. I did not think the outcome was going to be good for him.”
Testimony is expected to continue on Thursday in State District Judge Elizabeth Beach’s court.
This story contain information from the Star-Telegram archives.