DECATUR, Ill. (WCIA) — Prosecutors say 27-year-old Jessica Logan was found guilty Wednesday in Macon County Court for the murder of her own child.
A jury deliberated for over two hours before delivering the verdict before Judge Thomas Griffin.
The Decatur woman had been charged with first-degree murder following the death of her son, 19-month old Jayden Comage.
“I saw him laying in the bed. He was laying in a position like this,” Logan told the jury.
She used her arms to show the position, adding Comage was “face down”.
The autopsy reported the one-year-old died by asphyxiation. That piece of evidence was the prosecution’s closing argument before the door was shut on a murder case that spanned two years.
There was not a possibility that this expert could give us…that is not Jessica Logan killing this child,” concluded prosecuting attorney Stephen Friedel.
The defense argued the case wasn’t so clear-cut.
“He suffocated something pushed against his face and he suffocated,” Defense Attorney Chris Amero agreed.
In contrast to the prosecution, Amero added, “Again, how did that happen? Nobody knows.”
Friedel shook his head during the defense’s closing argument. His rebuttal: The doctor presenting the autopsy report made it clear that someone must have put pressure on the back of the child’s head or face. A pillow or tangled sheets couldn’t have caused the trauma found on Comage’s face.
And, Jessica logan was the only person home when he died aside from her other son, who the prosecution concluded, was not strong enough to suffocate his brother.
Police arrested Logan in late October 2019 after discovering a Google search for the words “how do you suffocate” on her phone from the day before her son’s death.
On the stand Wednesday, Logan said that the search happened during a conversation with family a few hours after her son’s death.
“What was this conversation about?” Logan’s attorney questioned.
“How he passed. How he could’ve passed,” Logan said.
“…and you guys didn’t know how he passed?” Amero replied.
Logan responded with, “No.”
The prosecution showed the courtroom both Logan’s phone record and another record pulled from Google. Both showed the search happened on October 6th. When Friedel asked her to explain the discrepancy, she couldn’t.
So, what about a motive?
Logan took out a life insurance policy on her son a year before his death. Phone records show she called the insurance company the day Jayden died.
As Logan pointed out in the courtroom Wednesday, she never cashed the policy. The defense argued once she found out the funeral for a young child was free, she didn’t want anything to do with it.
Whether that was genuine or not, she couldn’t have filed the paperwork during an active murder investigation.
Logan was convicted of first-degree murder. Her sentencing hearing was scheduled for July 21.
See below for more information on how the trial developed in court on Wednesday.
ORIGINAL STORY: DECATUR, Ill. (WCIA) — Closing arguments began Wednesday in the trial of a 27-year-old Decatur woman accused of killing her 19-month-old child.
Jessica Logan was arrested in October 2019 on a first-degree murder charge. First responders were called to a home in the 600 block of East Leafland Ave. where Jayden Comage was found dead.
Logan was his mother. During her third day on trial Wednesday, a defense attorney asked why she didn’t call 911. Logan said she knew her son was deceased at that point, and there was “nothing [she] could do.”
In initial police reports, Logan said her son had pneumonia at the time of his death. Her son’s daycare supervisor testified that Comage was taken to the ER over a dozen times in his 19-months of life.
In initial reports, police said Logan took out a life insurance policy on her son and tried to cash it the day he died. In court Wednesday, Logan claimed she only wanted to pay for her son’s funeral.
According to a life insurance representative’s testimony earlier in the week, Logan never filed the paperwork to cash out the policy.
Prosecutors say she couldn’t have filed the paperwork because she needed a death certificate — which isn’t available during a murder investigation.
Several discrepancies were noted by prosecutors.