Mom's boyfriend charged with murder of 18-month-old Maplewood girl


The boyfriend of the mother of an 18-month-old girl who died at a home in Maplewood has been charged with her murder.

The toddler, who has been identified by Ramsey County Attorney's Office as Genesis Xiong, "suffered unspeakable horror" before emergency responders found her unresponsive and with bruises to her body and face, after they were called called to the 2500 block of Barclay Street at 11 a.m Thursday.

Leb Like Meak, 35, of Maplewood, has been charged with second degree murder in connection with the child's death, according to a news release. Meak is the boyfriend of the girl's mother and was said to be caring for the child at the time of her death.

"This young child suffered unspeakable horror in the last moments of her short life," said Ramsey County Attorney John Choi. "This is an especially heinous crime, and we will seek justice for the family as well as the entire community."

Details of the criminal complaint

According to the criminal complaint, officers were met by Meak at the address in Maplewood, and noted he appeared "calm and unconcerned."

When asked if the child had been injured recently, he said she had fell and hit her head on a space heater in the bedroom the previous evening. He added that she was last awake 15 minutes earlier, and he found her not breathing when he came back from the kitchen with a bottle.

Later, in interview, Meak is alleged to have told officers he "roughed her [the child] up a bit" while changing her diaper, and is said to have admitted shaking her a few times.

Investigators are also said to have found traces of semen on the girl, the attorney's office says.

FOX 9 reports that Meak has not been living with the girl's mother. He has been booked into Ramsey County Jail and will make his first appearance at Ramsey District Court on Tuesday. Prosecutors will ask for bail to be set at $1.5 million.

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