Man charged in death of unborn baby after assaulting girlfriend in Rowan County, deputies say

ROWAN COUNTY, N.C. — A 42-year-old man has been charged following an assault committed on his ex-girlfriend that led to the death of the baby she was pregnant with, according to the Rowan County Sheriff’s Office.

On Nov. 11, deputies said Jenny Nicole Hearne was assaulted by Raymond Jerel Callicutt while in her home near W. NC 152 Hwy. She said they had previously been in a relationship, and a verbal argument between them quickly turned physical.

Days after the assault, Hearne said she went to the hospital due to concerning symptoms. She was pregnant with Callicutt’s child, Josiah Randolph Hearne, at the time of the assault.

Deputies said Josiah Randolph Hearne was born 24 weeks prematurely on Nov. 13. He lived just shy of 12 hours before dying from injuries sustained during the assault.

After his death, an autopsy determined that in addition to the records showing his mother had injuries, Josiah Randolph Hearne had injuries to his liver, brain, heart, and lungs. Deputies said those findings led to the death being ruled a homicide due to blunt force trauma from an assault.

Callicutt, who had previously been arrested for breaking into Jenny Nicole Hearne’s home, was further charged with the murder of an unborn child.

Deputies said Callicutt is being held without bond at the Rowan County jail, and his first court appearance will be on Wednesday.

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