New charges were filed Tuesday against a woman accused of shaking a 2-year-old boy to death because he was upset about being separated from his mother.
Pierce County prosecutors initially charged Atalani Tili, 30, with first-degree child assault.
Now, she also is charged with second-degree murder. A bail hearing is set for March 9.
The boy, identified as Keanu Perpetua, was taken off life support Feb. 23 and died early the next day.
Charging papers give this account:
The boy had been staying with Tili, a family friend, while his mother adjusted to a new job. Tili called 911 on Feb. 14 after Keanu collapsed and his eyes rolled back as she tried to dress him.
The child suffered a stroke and had swelling and bleeding around his brain in addition to scratches and bruises. Doctors determined the injuries were consistent with the boy being shaken multiple times.
Tili told detectives Keanu was difficult and aggressive when his mother left.
She said he bit her hand Feb. 13 and wouldn’t let go, so she threw him against a dresser and he hit his head on a hinge.
After she tended to her hand, Tili said, she found the boy struggling to get up.
“She felt that something was wrong, but she hoped he would get better with sleep,” records show.
In another recent incident, Keanu had a tantrum after his mother left and wouldn’t stop screaming, so Tili threw him to the floor.
She thought the boy hit his head on the dishwasher or floor, and he went to bed after being ordered to do so.
Stacia Glenn: 253-597-8653