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A Paris man awaiting trial on murder and arson charges in the death of his girlfriend's 2-year-old son has been charged in Logan County Circuit Court with threatening to kill another county jail inmate and causing injury to the jailer who intervened.

Ricky Carter, 28, was charged Friday with first-degree terroristic threatening and second-degree battery. The arrest warrant stated Carter was scheduled to appear before a judge on the charges at 9:30 a.m. June 8 in Circuit Court in Paris.

A probable cause affidavit said Carter was in the jail yard April 21 when Elijah Delisle, 21, began yelling at him. Carter became angry and yelled back at Delisle.

Carter began banging on the yard door and screaming that he was going to kill Delisle, the affidavit said. Detention Deputy Cleveland Stewart stepped in and told both men to stop yelling, but the yelling continued. Stewart opened the yard door to calm Carter down, but Carter tried to push past Stewart, causing two scrapes on Stewart's left arm that bled.

The two charges are felonies that carry sentences of up to six years in prison.

Carter was in the county jail awaiting an Aug. 24 trial on charges of first-degree murder and arson. He could be sentenced up to 40 years or to life in prison if convicted of the murder charge. The arson charge is a misdemeanor, according to court records.

Carter's attorney, Hugh Laws of Russellville, filed a notice of intent earlier this month to raise the defense of mental disease or defect and/or diminished capacity. Carter has been ordered to undergo a criminal responsibility examination.

He is accused of causing the death of 2-year-old Ryatt Reese the morning of Dec. 21 at the Paris home of Ryatt's mother, Julie Haney. He told investigators he was watching Haney's four children and that Ryatt had become sick and threw up.

After cleaning up Ryatt, according to a probable cause affidavit, Carter admitted that he yanked the boy by the ankles. Ryatt fell back, hit his head on the floor and began shaking. Carter said he tried to perform CPR on the boy but he didn't respond.

According to the affidavit, Carter said he put Ryatt back in bed, opened a gas line at the rear of the house and waited for about 45 minutes before lighting a lighter, which caused an explosion, damaging the house and starting a fire at the back of the house.

When police arrived, the children were removed from the house but the officer noticed Ryatt was not conscious. The boy was transported to the hospital where he was declared dead.

The county coroner noticed rigor mortis had set in on Ryatt, which doesn't normally occur for two to six hours after death, which meant Ryatt died before the fire occurred, according to the affidavit.

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State Desk on 05/26/2018

Print Headline: Murder suspect charged in jail scuffle; Man awaiting trial in Paris toddler’s death accused of causing guard’s injuries

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