Man testifies he wasn’t aware accused father even had a baby
MOUNT PLEASANT, Iowa (AP) — A former friend of an Iowa father whose infant son was found dead and maggot-infested in a baby swing last year has testified he wasn’t even aware the man had a baby.
Jordan Clark testified Wednesday at the trial of 29-year-old Zachary Paul Koehn, who’s charged with murder and child endangerment in the August 2017 death of 4-month-old Sterling Koehn, the Courier reported . The baby’s mother, Cheyanne Harris, is also charged and faces a separate trial.
Clark testified that he was aware Koehn had a young daughter, because he said Koehn would often talk about her. But said he didn’t know Koehn had an infant son, despite having visited Koehn’s Alta Vista apartment.
Clark also said that he, Koehn and the baby’s mother smoked meth, and that Koehn bought $20 to $40 worth of meth from him weekly.
Clark, who began a relationship with Harris after the baby’s death, said on the stand that Koehn called the morning of the baby’s death saying he had misplaced a black bag containing meth and a scale.
“He made the comment he needed to find it before anyone else did,” Clark said.
A prosecutor said Tuesday that the baby had been in the same diaper for nine to 14 days when his body was found in the swing by first responders at his parents’ Alta Vista apartment. The baby’s heavily soiled diaper had attracted bugs that had laid eggs, which had hatched into maggots. The resulting diaper rash led to ruptured skin, and e.Coli bacteria set in.
A coroner’s report showed the baby died of malnutrition, dehydration and an infection.
Koehn’s trial was moved from Chickasaw County to Henry County to counter pretrial publicity.
Information from: Waterloo-Cedar Falls Courier, http://www.wcfcourier.com