Merrill woman charged with death of 16-month-old son headed to trial
Child’s father, also charged, to appear in court next month
By Jalen Maki
Tomahawk Leader Editor
MERRILL – A Merrill mother facing charges related to the death of her 16-month-old son last year will go to trial.
Amber Paige Boyd, 22, appeared in Lincoln County court on Friday, Sept. 10, facing a felony charge of child neglect, causing death. During the preliminary hearing, Judge Jay R. Tlusty ruled that there is sufficient evidence for the case to go to trial.
Boyd is scheduled to appear in court on Oct. 5, when she is expected to enter a plea to the charge.
The charge stems from an incident that occurred last fall.
According to a criminal complaint, the Lincoln County 911 Dispatch Center received a 911 call from Boyd on Nov. 12, 2020, during which Boyd allegedly said the child was not breathing.
Law enforcement arrived on the scene roughly 15 minutes later. According to the complaint, “numerous bruises” to the child’s face, head, neck, arms, and legs were allegedly observed, as well as what appeared to be “makeup or covering” around scabs on the child’s neck or chin area and near the middle of the child’s eyebrows. “Makeup, foundation, or concealer in a light coating” was allegedly observed on the child’s face, top of head, and hair.
The child, who was approximately 16 months old, was pronounced dead at Ascension Good Samaritan Health Center in Merrill by Lincoln County Coroner Paul Proulx, after arriving by ambulance.
An autopsy conducted on Nov. 13, 2020 found the child had “acute bronchiolitis and bronchopneumonia.”
Evidence of physical abuse was also present, the complaint stated. “Approximately 70 to 80” lesions were allegedly observed on the child’s body during the autopsy.
Methamphetamine was found in the child’s blood, as well as in the urine of the child’s siblings, after tests of each were conducted on Nov. 13, 2020, the complaint said.
Boyd allegedly admitted to snorting a line of methamphetamine off of a plate on Nov. 10, 2020, one day before an employee of the Lincoln County Department of Social Services observed signs of abuse during a visit to the home and two days before the child’s death.
Boyd was taken into custody after a traffic stop in Merrill on May 19, 2021, following a six-month investigation into the child’s death.
The child’s father, Cody Gene Robertson, 25, of Merrill, was taken into custody in Merrill that morning. He also faces a felony charge of child neglect, causing death.
Robertson was also scheduled to appear in court for a preliminary hearing on Friday, Sept. 10. A status conference for Robertson was scheduled for Oct. 27.
Both Boyd and Robertson remain in the Lincoln County Jail.