COLUMBUS, Ga. — The family of one of Columbus’ latest homicide victims is coming forward in an effort to clear his son’s name.
According to the Belle Family, Damian Belle’s former girlfriend, Jacquavia Bassett, claims Damian beat and killed her 23-month-old baby Ki’ja in 2014. What’s interesting about this story though, the family claims when Damian was first accused of murder, Jacquavia was on his side.
“Bassett in the very beginning of this case had nothing but support for Damian..nothing but support,” says Attorney William Kendrick.
Wednesday, Columbus Attorney William Kendrick who was representing the late Damian Belle sat alongside Belle’s father Dayman to clear the name of his son who was accused of murder back in 2014. Belle and his girlfriend Kelsey Marshall were shot and killed Friday, December 8 at the Efficiency Lodge near Macon Road. Belle’s father and Kendrick say Belle’s former girlfriend, Jacquavia Bassett, is now calling attention to Belle, being accused of the March 2014 death of her 23-month-old baby Ki’ja.
“I recount that day over in my mind over a thousand times,” says Dayman Belle.
Dayman says he was there with Damian when Ki’ja was struggling to breathe. He says, the mother Jacquavia, was out of town for weeks at the time. According to a witness statement from a minor, Belle beat baby Ki’ja repeatedly and that’s what led to her death. But Dayan says he and Damian rushed Ki’ja to the nearest location for help after she had an incident in the tub that caused her breathing to be irregular. Dayman says the tub incident happened when then 19-year-old Damian stepped away briefly to tend to the microwave.
“My son jumped out the truck with her and rushed her over to the paramedics who was outside doing something so they put her on a bench and start giving her CPR,” says Dayman Belle.
Ki’ja was rushed to Midtown Medical and from there to Egleston Hosptial in Atlanta where she later died from blunt impact head trauma, based on preliminary autopsy results. The family says the baby had no injuries on her body when she died. And when it comes to Bassett, the family has a question for her mother Jacquavia. “If Damian was so bad like you’re making him out to be, why did you feel comfortable enough to leave her in his care, for weeks?”
Damian’s family says they just want to bury their son. They say they just want to find peace in all of this, but they say it’s difficult when their son’s name keeps being slandered.
News 3 reached out to Jacquavia’s mother in an effort to get in contact with Jacquavia, but we still haven’t gotten a response.