Jury Finds Chickasha Man, Accused Of Killing Infant Daughter, Guilty

Thursday, February 7th 2013, 7:15 pm
By: News 9

A jury has found a Chickasha man accused of killing his 2-month-old daughter guilty of murder by child abuse, and has recommended a sentence of life in prison.

The ruling came down shortly after 8 p.m. Thursday night.

Royce Jarnagin was arrested three years after the little girl's death in 2008.

The jury made up of half women and half men deliberated for more than eight hours, this after prosecutors told them Jarnagin may have been a good father until the day he shook his baby to death.

"It's a very difficult case and to see the injuries this child suffered it makes it very difficult on everybody," said Grady County District Attorney, Jason Hicks. "There is only one way these types of injuries could have been accomplished and that is by someone using some type of a force and a forceful shake."

4/8/2011 Related Story: Chickasha Man Arrested, Accused Of Killing Infant Daughter

Grady County prosecutors say the victim's father, Royce Jarnagin, is to blame. During the four-day trial, the state called the mother of the victim, investigators, and medical experts to testify.

"The evidence is overwhelming that this child died because of a violent act toward her," Hicks said.

Court records indicate Keira stopped breathing inside her Chickasha home in the care of her father. Jarnagin told investigators, when he woke the two month old from a nap "she was like rubber" and a noodle in his hand. Still, doctors reported injuries on the child that made them ask Jarnagin if he shook the baby.

"In this instance you have a 2-month-old obviously not mobile, can't talk, can't do anything and all we can do is present to the jury is what the medical experts have told us," said Hicks.

The defense did not comment on the case.