Knoxville man convicted of beating 11-year-old boy to death
A Knoxville man who viciously beat to death an 11-year-old boy for refusing to vacuum an apartment is guilty of third-degree murder, an Allegheny County jury decided Tuesday.
A judge will sentence Anthony Bush, 29, on April 23 for the fatal beating of his girlfriend's son last February. Prosecutors said Bush beat Donovan McKee over nine hours, using a metal pipe, barbells, belts and sticks, at the Rochelle Towers apartment Bush shared with Donovan's mother, Cynthia McKee, and his brother, Vincere, 5, who witnessed the beating.
The family declined to comment when leaving court but released a statement through the District Attorney's Office, thanking jurors “for their hard work in the face of what was difficult, emotional and heart-wrenching testimony regarding the death of Donovan. We would also like everyone to know that Vincere is now surrounded by our family and is being lovingly cared for.”
Public defender Lisa Middleman didn't deny that Bush killed the boy but said he didn't intend to. She said Bush, abused as a child, had mental problems.
Assistant District Attorney Lisa Pelligrini said Bush called Cynthia McKee about 9 p.m. on Feb. 11, 2012, to ask her where he could find a needle and thread, and then told her to come home from work. Prosecutors said he stitched a wound on Donovan's head.
When McKee arrived home about 10 p.m., she found the boy naked and unresponsive on the couch, with blood in his nose and mouth. Bush and McKee called 911 about an hour and 40 minutes later. The boy died the next morning at Children's Hospital in Lawrenceville.
McKee pleaded guilty last month to involuntary manslaughter. Common Pleas President Judge Donna Jo McDaniel will sentence her March 27. She is free on electronic monitoring.
Four years before Donovan's death, county Children Youth and Families caseworkers spent several months working with his family, a state official said. Someone reported the family to the agency, citing “parental concerns.” That prompted in-home supportive services from October 2007 to March 2008, said Carey Miller, spokeswoman for the state Department of Public Welfare.
Miller declined to say who made the referral or what concerns were stated. Detectives said the boy had older, healed injuries and bruises from beatings.
The support services would have included home visits by staff and caseworker evaluations, Miller said.
Elaine Plunkett, spokeswoman for county Human Services, said confidentiality laws prohibit CYF from discussing such cases. This family's case was closed and caseworkers had no involvement with them in the year before Donovan's death, officials said.
Adam Brandolph is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-391-0927 or email@example.com.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- U.S. Steel looks to expand its Research & Technology Center in Munhall
- Temple dumps SAT, ACT scores from application process
- Rossi: Pirates must land Lester
- Surprise! Lee Supply will play for Grebb girls’ title
- Beloved teacher at 3 Western Pa. schools hears from students across nation
- Powdermill reserve summer program teaches wildlife conservation
- Steelers notebook: Brown calls Sanders’ comments about Roethlisberger ‘terrible’
- Steelers hold high hopes for pass defense
- Proposed Mt. Pleasant VFW relocation site faces a backlash
- After years of lobbying, Big Ben has Steelers running the no-huddle
- Pirates notebook: Trade rumors for Red Sox pitcher Lester still swirling