Lebanon parents charged in death of 4-month-old baby

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Jason Kurtz (Left) and Kimberly Sourwine (Right)

LEBANON, Pa.–The parents of a four-month-old baby boy who died in Lebanon earlier this year have been charged in connection to his death.

Jason Kurtz, 37, and Kimberly Sourwine, 31, both of Lebanon, are each charged  with endangering the welfare of children. Kurtz is also charged with aggravated assault and simple assault. The pair were arraigned November 9 and taken to Lebanon County Correctional Facility in lieu of $750,000 bail.

Lebanon City police were dispatched  to an apartment located along the 800 block of Guilford Street for an unresponsive four-month-old boy on January 12.  The infant was taken to a local hospital where he was pronounced dead.

According to police, Kurtz was supposed to be caring for the baby while Sourwine was at work. Around 7:45 p.m. authorities say Kurtz put the baby face down in a mechanical swing, in an attempt to get him to sleep.

At one point, Kurtz left the baby and his other siblings, ages 9, 6 and 4 months, to go to a bar to purchase beer, according to police reports. He was gone for about 20 minutes.

Sourwine returned home from work around 10 p.m., but only checked on the baby about an hour later.

An autopsy on the infant revealed he had previous injuries including a fractured vertebra and rib fractures consistent with a compression type injury. The autopsy was unable to determine the baby’s exact cause of death.

An examination of the boy’s twin brother showed that he also had a healing rib fracture.

Investigators say the healing injuries to both children were indicative of abuse.

The couple is due back in court on Dec. 22 for their preliminary hearing.