TIPTON – Tipton County officials are considering increasing courthouse security for the upcoming trial of a man accused of fatally beating a 4-year-old boy in his care after the boy soiled himself.
James Rice faces charges of battery causing death and neglect and reckless homicide in the November 2010 death of Dylan Cast.
Rices trial is scheduled to begin June 26 and is expected to draw a large crowd of family members and friends, the Kokomo Tribune reported.
Tipton Circuit Court Judge Thomas Lett and Sheriff John Moses have recommended that three of the four entrances to the courthouse be closed and a metal detector be installed at the entrance. The plan also includes scanning the courthouse with trained dogs each evening and in the morning before the building opens and moving any meetings scheduled in the courthouse after 4 p.m. to other locations during the trial.
There will be a lot of people at the trial, Lett said. There are always a lot of people during the court hearings.
Mike Cline, president of the Tipton County commissioners, said Moses has asked the Indiana State Police to have a security expert make recommendations.
Cline said the county will check the courts budget to determine whether funds are available to pay for the additional security measures.
According to a probable cause affidavit, Dylan was disciplined by Rice after he had an accident while being potty trained on Nov. 26, 2010. At the time, Rice was the boyfriend of Dylans mother and had been caring for the boy and his 5-year-old sibling.
Rice gave authorities conflicting accounts of how the boy was injured and said he spanked him after the incident.
Police say Rice waited about an hour after he found Dylan unresponsive before calling 911. An autopsy report showed the boy died of blunt-force trauma and that his spine was fractured and his aorta was lacerated.