A Genesee County judge sentenced the man convicted of torturing and murdering 4-year-old Dominick Calhoun to life in prison. Brandon Hayes was convicted in January on ten counts, including first- and second-degree murder.
Judge Richard Yuille also sentenced Dominickâ??s mother, Corrine Baker, to 13 to 30 years in prison for second-degree murder. Yuille said her sentence was reduced because she testified against Hayes, and she will serve close to 20 years in prison.
Before their sentences were read, Dominick's aunt Melanie Calhoun addressed the court.
"We ask that you issue the maximum sentence. Brandon may have been the weapon but Corrine was the one that loaded that weapon," said Melanie Calhoun.
Corrine Baker also addressed the court.
"I live with the death of my son every day. I made horrible choices, horrible choices paid for by my son. I will have to answer to God. I hope he will forgive me. Brandon Hayes took him away and I will not let him take away my memories. I've lost everything, my family, my freedom and Tyler. I will never forget Dominick," said Corrine Baker.
Before sentencing Brandon Hayes, Judge Yuille told him how diffult it was to hear this case.
"How could you be so cruel to someone so small? Pulling his teeth with your bare hands! How? Why? I don't know if you shed tears for Dominick but I have." said Judge Yuille.
Prosecutors say Hayes killed Dominick Calhoun in April 2010, after torturing the child in the Argentine Township apartment where Dominick lived with Baker and his stepbrother. Corrine Baker pleaded guilty to second-degree murder last September, and agreed to testify against Hayes in January, as part of the plea deal.
Hayes was convicted in January, after he was granted a change of venue and the case moved to St. Clair County.