SARASOTA, Fla. (WFLA) — A North Port man accused in the disturbing murder of his 9-week-old son pleaded not guilty to the crime on Thursday. Joseph Walsh 36, and Kristen Bury 32, are charged with the murder of their son, Chance Walsh.
Joseph Walsh’s public defender Jerome Meisner filed a plea of not guilty for his client Thursday in Sarasota. Walsh also wants a jury trial and participation in the discovery process.
Also on Thursday, the Sarasota County Sheriff’s Office released a probable cause affidavit for Kristen Bury that revealed additional details about the abuse that baby Chance suffered in the hours before he died.
The affidavit is the second one released in the case. It followed the probable cause affidavit for Joseph Walsh, which was released by the sheriff’s office on Oct. 20.
The Joseph Walsh affidavit said that Bury and Walsh told investigators that Chance had died the morning of Sept. 16 at their home on Orduna Drive in North Port. Walsh was having an argument with Bury. During the argument, Walsh allegedly struck Chance repeatedly. At one point, Kristen told Joseph, “You are going to break his [expletive] neck.” Joseph told Kristen he was going to bash Chance’s head into the ground during the argument. According to the affidavit, Bury never called 911 and didn’t take any measures to save the child.
The probable cause affidavit for Kristen Bury which was released on Thursday included information that was redacted in the Joseph Walsh affidavit. The information might be considered disturbing to some readers.
The affidavit said that Joseph pressed a pacifier into Chance’s mouth with such force that it made the baby bleed. Joseph then took Chance into the bathroom where he remained for a short time and when he came out, he told Kristin there was a diaper wipe in Chance’s throat. Kristen told detectives that Chance was turning blue when he was brought out of the bathroom. Kristen used what was described as “extreme measures” to remove the diaper wipe, according to the affidavit.
Chance was laid to bed. The affidavit said that hours later, Kristen tried to feed Chance formula from a baby bottle and noticed that Chance was gasping for air. A short time later he died.
Both affidavits said that Joseph and Kristen made no effort to contact EMS or get any other medical assistance. Walsh said in an interview that Bury told him she did not want to call 911 because “she did not want to lose both people she loves in the same day.”
The documents later explain that after Chance died, he was placed in a crib and left to decompose. The smell was so overwhelming that Joseph wrapped Chance in garbage bags and placed the remains in a closet.
On September 24th, just before daylight, the pair drove to Elliot Court in North Port and buried Chance’s body there.
The couple then left Florida and headed north. They told detectives they were going to start a new life somewhere else. They were arrested after getting into a car accident in Hardeeville, South Carolina.
On October 15th, Kristen Bury directed detectives to a grave site near Elliot Court. Chance’s decomposed body was found covered only with a diaper.
Joseph Walsh and Kristen Bury were each charged with 1st degree felony murder. Bury pleaded not guilty to the charge on Tuesday.