Sexual battery case against teen dropped

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Posted: Friday, November 9, 2012 9:24 am

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (AP) - Prosecutors are dropping the sexual battery case against a Jacksonville teen accused of killing one younger brother and molesting another.

The State Attorney's Office on Thursday dropped the case, citing a lack of physical evidence or witnesses that 13-year-old Cristian Fernandez sexually abused his then-5-year-old half-brother. Fernandez was arrested last year following the March death of his 2-year-old half-brother.

Authorities say Fernandez had been home alone with the toddler when he suffered a fractured skull, bruising to his left eye and a bleeding brain. The boys' mother, Susana, waited more than eight hours to take the injured child to the hospital, where he died. The mother pleaded guilty to manslaughter earlier this year.

The Florida Times-Union reports that Fernandez is still set to be tried for first-degree murder next year.

(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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