Man convicted of manslaughter after leaving infant son face down

A Golden Valley man was convicted of manslaughter this morning and will likely get five years in the slammer for lying his infant son face down under a four-pound blanket and leaving him unattended for 30 minutes.

Willie Ervin Franklin III admitted to calling a phone sex chatline and lighting up a bowl after leaving the room. He turned up the music so he couldn't hear the infant. Within the half-hour Willie Franklin IV had suffocated to death.

Details from the Strib:

When [Franklin] returned, the baby wasn't breathing. Franklin called police and tried to resuscitate the infant, he testified.

In a previous court session, the medical examiner said he was unable to determine a cause of the child's death. An autopsy revealed no internal injuries, but found a bump on his forehead and a cut shaped like a fingernail near his nose, and hemorrhages in each eye consistent with suffocation.

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