Crystal Stephens, 42, of Las Vegas, Nevada, is facing the death penalty in the brutal torture death of a four-year-old autistic boy left in her care last summer
A woman indicted on 27 charges in the brutal torture death a four-year-old autistic boy last July will face capital punishment.
Prosecutors announced Thursday that they will seek the death penalty against Crystal Stephens, 42, of Las Vegas, Nevada, after Brandon Steckler Jr. was found with a litany of injuries and wounds in her home last year before dying at the hospital, according to the Las Vegas Review-Journal.
If convicted and sentenced, Stephens would be the only woman on Nevada's death row, according to Clark County Chief Deputy District Attorney Jacqueline Bluth.
Along with the capital murder charge, Stephens has also been charged with one count of first-degree kidnapping, one count of sexual assault on a minor and 24 counts of child abuse, neglect or endangerment.
Even months after the nonverbal Brandon Jr. was left in the care of family friend Stephens, his injuries were so numerous, the medical examiner has not determined the exact cause of death, according to the prosecutor.
The boy was with Stephens, who the mom Ariel Watts claims refused to return him, for three weeks before his death, and the medical examiner's grand jury transcript stated that it was 'fair to say that pretty much every inch of this child had some type of injury,' according to KLAS.
Ariel Watts (left) left her son Brandon Steckler Jr. (right) along with his sister while she was allegedly in a domestic violence shelter in the care of Crystal Stephens. He would be dead weeks later
Brandon Steckler Jr. seen in an earlier photo, was so severely injured, the medical examiner's office has yet to determine an exact cause of death