A Celebration of Life ceremony has been announced for a two-year-old was found brutally slain at a residence in Clinton.
Deputies said they responded to residence on Country Lane on July 30 and found the child deceased inside the home.
According to deputies, the child appeared to have been brutally beaten and had apparent injuries all over their body. The sheriff's office said the child was sexually molested before death.
The coroner identified the child as Brantley Smith.
After an autopsy, the coroner confirmed Brantley suffered multiple blunt force trauma.
A celebration of Brantley's life will was held at 1 p.m. Friday at Rabun Creek Baptist Church.
The family released the following statement after the service:"The family of Brantley Smith appreciates all that has been done to honor the memory of Brantley and support us during this time. We especially acknowledge law enforcement, social services, the coroner's office, community friends, concerned citizens, and so many others who have been with us on this journey. This includes: Sheriff Don Reynolds, Donna Heiggonbothan, Porche of DSS, Captain Wilkie, Officer Staton, the Clinton Police Dept. who held our other grandbabies with loving care. Brantley is with Jesus now. We take hope in that. One day, we will see him again. "Deputies said the child's mother, Jessica Blake Smith and her boyfriend, William Ryan Looper, were arrested in connection with the child's death.
Sheriff Don Reynolds said Looper has previously been arrested for break-ins.
Two other children, six and seven years old, were also at the residence, Sheriff Reynolds said. They have been taken to a hospital for examination.
“These animals, who are possessed with pure evil, have no place in our society. There is no rehabilitation for people this evil. I’m sure God has a place for these broken individuals, as he does for these precious children," Sheriff Reynolds said.
Deputies said Looper has been charged with murder, criminal sexual conduct with a minor 1st degree and two counts of unlawful conduct toward a child. Smith was charged with homicide by child abuse and two counts of unlawful conduct toward a child.
A vigil for Brantley was held on Sunday at the Laurens County Sheriff's Office.
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