Almost a week after charges were filed, police were still searching Wednesday for the 24-year-old man accused of killing a Belleville toddler in April.
Officers went Friday evening to Gyasi Campbell’s mother’s home in Berkley, Mo., to arrest the man, St. Clair County Sheriff’s Capt. Bruce Fleshren wrote in an email Wednesday. However, when police arrived, Campbell had already left.
“Since that time officers in Missouri and Illinois have been checking addresses and associates that Campbell may be at or in contact with,” Fleshren wrote.
Fleshren said they had not located Campbell as of Wednesday, and police planned to seek help from CrimeStoppers.
His first-degree murder charge stems from the April death of 2-year-old Kane Friess-Wylie, who was the son of Campbell’s then-girlfriend.
Campbell brought the toddler to St. Elizabeth’s Hospital the evening of April 13, according to a police search warrant previously obtained by the News-Democrat.
The toddler was flown almost immediately from St. Elizabeth’s to Cardinal Glennon Children’s Hospital in St. Louis, where he later died. Hospital staff contacted the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services, which called the sheriff’s department.
According to a medical examiner’s report, Kane died of a head injury.
Gyasi Campbell was booked on a $5,000 bail the morning of Dec. 6 on a charge of violating his bond in an unrelated case as St. Clair prosecutors began reviewing investigator’s findings in Kane’s death, according to St. Clair County State’s Attorney Brendan Kelly.
Campbell posted the required 10 percent, $500 in cash, for bond in the unrelated case and was released from jail the same day, according to officials.
Investigators initially held Campbell as a person of interest in the hours after Kane’s death in April, according to search warrant documents. However, they released him shortly afterward while the investigation continued.
Kane’s 24-year-old mother, Lindsey Friess, told police she returned to her home in Belleville on April 13 and found her boyfriend holding the boy in a reclining chair, according to search warrant documents.
The mother told police the child was conscious but was moaning. He vomited right after Friess arrived.
Friess called 911 and Campbell put the toddler’s “head/face under a water faucet in an effort to revive him,” police wrote in the affidavit.
Campbell and a family friend then drove the toddler to a hospital while Friess said she woke her youngest child up and dressed her. She then drove with that same family friend to Cardinal Glennon Children's Hospital in St. Louis after learning doctors were taking her son there via helicopter.
Friess has said that details about her ex-boyfriend’s account of what happened to the toddler has changed several times — such as which room the injury occurred in and how her child was injured.
“There was no physical injury on Kane at all — there was nothing on him,” Friess previously told the BND. “No bruises, no blood — nothing. He was just acting funny.”
Campbell is not the toddler’s biological father, however Friess and Campbell share a daughter.