HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY, Fla. (WFLA) — A Florida man was charged with murdering his stepson, then forcing the boy’s brothers to sleep in the same bed with the body all night.
31-year-old Jack Junior Montgomery is being held in jail on $870,000 bond. He was accused of repeatedly punching and kicking 7-year-old Brice Russell.
Montgomery told investigators he disciplined the child after Brice got out of bed to get a cookie.
Brice’s mother, Donya Shenita Russell was, according to Assistant State Attorney Matthew Smith, working a double shift at the time.
“While she was out working, he chose to not only physically discipline this child himself, by not only repeatedly punching and throwing him on the ground but threatening bodily harm upon the two brothers if they did not partake and equally discipline him,” Mr. Smith told a judge in court.
The family lived at the Seffner Masters Inn.
Brice’s brothers told investigators they saw Montgomery punch the boy in the head and stomach several times with a closed fist.
“(Montgomery) picked him up and flung him as described by the other brothers, helicopter across the hotel room into what’s kind of a cabinet, where he hit head first. And ultimately caused his brain to bleed,” added prosecutor Smith.
That’s, according to the State Attorney’s Office, what caused Brice to die within seconds or minutes.
His brothers told investigators Montgomery tried splashing water on Brice’s face. He didn’t wake up.
“As if that was not aggravated enough, Mr. Montgomery took the child, put him in bed and had his siblings sleep with him while while Brice was dead that entire night,” added Matthew Smith.
Neighbors say Donya Shenita Russell has cleared out of the hotel. Nexstar contributors in Florida, WFLA, received no response at Montgomery’s last known address in Tampa.
Montgomery has a history of domestic violence and battery.
Now, he is staring at a possible death penalty, charged with the murder of a little boy.