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'He's being a jerk': Court documents show texts between mother, man accused of killing 3-year-old

West Melbourne police say on June 11, Jameson Nance died in the care of Joshua Manns, his mother Erica Dotson's boyfriend.
Credit: Brevard County Sheriff's Office. West Melbourne PD

WEST MELBOURNE, Fla. — The mother of a 3-year-old Florida boy faces first-degree murder charges as more details about his death come out. 

West Melbourne police say on June 11, Jameson Nance died in the care of Joshua Manns, his mother Erica Dotson's boyfriend. 

Court documents say on that day, Manns called Dotson to tell her Nance had drowned. Dotson told officers she rushed home to find her son dead in the bathroom and Manns was nowhere to be found. 

However, police say they did not find any evidence that Nance had drowned. Officers say an autopsy showed "clear signs of 'battered child syndrome' with injuries from weeks ago including a fractured rib, brain swelling and stabs to his head."

The West Melbourne Police Department posted to Facebook that Manns has been found weeks after Nance's death in Georgia. 

According to WKMG, officers believe Dotson knew Manns was abusing her son and didn't do anything to protect him. 

Court documents contained by WKMG show Manns and Dotson texted each other about Nance. They said things like,“F’him” as well as “he’s being a jerk” and “sorry he’s being suck (sic) a (expletive)," according to WKMG. 

Investigators say Dotson had made claims Manns had hurt himself before, according to WKMG. The news station says that includes Manns falling and breaking a leg in 2019 and again breaking a leg in March of this year by stepping off a curb. 

Dotson faces charges of first-degree murder, aggravated child abuse and aggravated manslaughter. 

Manns faces first-degree premeditated murder charges, aggravated child abuse and child neglect with bodily great bodily harm charges. 

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