Jury selection to resume for trial of military member charged with killing toddler

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EL CAJON, Calif. — Jury selection will resume Tuesday in the trial of a Navy man accused of inflicting fatal injuries on his girlfriend’s 19-month-old son in 2016 in Alpine.

Brett Brown, 32, is charged with murder and child abuse in the death of Lucas Orlando.

The child’s mother, Renee Fournier, pleaded guilty to felony child endangerment and has yet to be sentenced.

About 1:45 p.m. on Jan. 11, 2016, deputies responding to an emergency at Fournier’s apartment of Arnold Way found her son gravely injured, said sheriff’s Lt. Kenneth Nelson.

Brown told deputies Lucas had been hurt in a fall. Fournier was at work at the time, Nelson said.

Brown had been watching Lucas that day along with Fournier’s other child and two of his own from a previous relationship, Nelson said.

Paramedics took Lucas to Rady Children’s Hospital, where he died two days later.

Detectives investigating the death determined that the trauma the boy suffered was too severe to have occurred the way Brown described it, according to Nelson.

Brown — a Navy corpsman on leave at the time — was arrested on Jan. 14, 2016.

During Brown’s arraignment, Deputy District Attorney Chantal de Mauregne told a judge that the victim had multiple skull fractures and two broken bones — one each in an arm and a leg — that had been healing. The toddler also had bruising on his body, the prosecutor said.

Opening statements in Brown’s trial are expected Sept. 4.

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