July 24, 2014

Elyria
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Man indicted in 2-year-old Elyria girl’s death

Luis Lopez enters the courtroom at the Elyria Municipal Court for his preliminary hearing. (CT photo by Bruce Bishop.)

ELYRIA — Luis Lopez has been indicted on murder, involuntary manslaughter, felonious assault, endangering children and domestic violence for the September death of 2-year-old Aaviana Payne.

Lopez, the 25-year-old boyfriend of Aaviana’s mother, had originally faced child endangering and involuntary manslaughter charges when he was arrested in October more than a month after Aaviana died.

Aaviana died from blood collecting on the surface of her brain, which investigators have said was caused by blunt trauma. The girl also was in a cast at the time of her death because of a broken ankle and femur, which were from two separate incidents.

Police have said they found signs of abuse on the girl, including what appeared to be healing immersion burns.

Lopez told police that he had tripped over a pair of the shoes at the bottom of the stairs in the Rosewood Drive apartment he shared with Margot Young, Aaviana’s mother. Police said Lopez told them that after he tripped, Aaviana fell and hit her back and head on the floor the day before her death.

Read Friday’s Chronicle for more on this story.