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Emjay Corn and his mother Nichole Hall (courtesy POC)

The October 29th death of an 18 month-old Joplin toddler has been ruled a homicide.

Lt. Brian Lewis says preliminary autopsy results reveal that little Emjay Braxton Corn died of blunt force trauma to the head.

Eric J. Hicks, 28, the boyfriend of Emjay's mother, Nichole Hall, 32, called authorities after he found the little boy dead in his crib after leaving him home alone for about an hour while he went to a methadone clinic.

Nichole Hall was in a mental hospital at the time of her son's death.  Authorities were called to the home she shared with Hicks at 1322 Pennsylvania Ave. on the evening of October 27th after Hall threatened to kill herself and everyone in the house, according to sources close to the case. 

When asked if Emjay's injuries could have been caused by Hall prior to her hospitalization, or if the boy could have been dead for several hours or up to a day before Hicks's timeline- Lewis said, "We're waiting on a forensic pathologist to establish a timeline in the case."

Authorities have been called back out to the Pennsylvania Avenue house at least twice after Hall was released from the hospital.  "On November 3rd an officer was requested to call the home and on November 4th there was a follow up," said Lewis.


Eric J. Hicks has been charged with endangering the welfare of a child


Hall was re-admitted to the mental hospital last week.

Hicks has been charged with endangering the welfare of a child and was released from jail after posting $10,000 bond.

No charges have been filed against anyone at this time in connection to Emjay's murder.

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