Nathaniel Knox died several days after police say he was beaten by his mother's boyfriend, Jason Napier, who pleaded not guilty to charges Monday afternoon.
Police day the 4-year-old died of blunt force trauma to the head.
The child’s mother, Jessica Noble, was arrested in Lexington on Saturday. She's charged with complicity to commit murder.
“When she left him in the hands of someone who had been abusing him,” said Lincoln County Sheriff Curt Folger.
Police say it’s not the first time the child had injuries inflicted on him by the hands of someone else.
“I cannot say if there was history from him (Napier), it looks like there's a history of abuse to this child,” said Folger.
Police say both Napier and Noble gave them conflicting stories about what happened to Nathaniel at the hospital, including one claiming the child had simply fallen down. Noble told police she was at Wal-Mart when the incident happened. But police don't believe that story. They're not commenting on a motive....but they are saying that the 4-year-old had very rough...young life.
“A 4-year-old doesn't stand a chance to defend himself or speak for himself,” said Folger.
Napier will be back in court next Monday when attorneys expect the case will be sent to a grand jury. He remains in jail on a $100,000 bond.