Minneapolis man pleads guilty to kicking, stomping 2-year-old girl to death

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An 18-year-old Minneapolis man has pleaded guilty to the brutal beating death of a 2-year-old toddler in June.

Cody Feran-Baum entered the plea Wednesday to second-degree unintentional murder for killing Sophia O'Neill, the daughter of his girlfriend, Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman said in a news release.

Feran-Baum, who was 17 at the time, was tried as an adult.

Feran-Baum admitted in court Wednesday that he was babysitting O'Neill on June 10 when he "lost it" because the little girl was crying and wouldn't stop.

He said he kicked the girl in the back several times, then stomped on her back as she was lying on the floor.

O'Neill died the next day from severe internal injuries. She also had several broken bones.

As part of the plea agreement, Feran-Baum is expected to be sentenced to 25 years in prison. Freeman said that's a significantly longer prison term than a person with no criminal history would normally receive.

“The torture this little girl had to endure is sickening,” Freeman said in the news release. “We promised when he was charged that we would seek a higher sentence and we have kept that promise.”

Feran-Baum also admitted that when paramedics arrived on the scene, he lied to them and said Sophia had drowned in the bathtub while he gave her a bath.

His sentencing hearing is scheduled for Dec. 22.

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