Man Convicted in Death of Adrian Peterson’s Son

A South Dakota jury has convicted a man of second-degree murder and other charges in connection to the death of Adrian Peterson’s 2-year-old son Tyrese.

Joseph Patterson, 29, was found guilty of second-degree murder, first-degree manslaughter and aggravated battery by a Lincoln County jury on Tuesday.

The deliberation took more than five hours, and followed two weeks of testimony about Tyrese Robert Ruffin’s Oct. 2013 death.

According to authorities, Patterson, who was the boyfriend of Tyrese’s mother, assaulted the young child while the two were alone in a Sioux Falls apartment. An autopsy found that the boy’s head sustained four blows, causing his brain to bleed, and doctors determined the injuries could not have been accidental.

Patterson’s defense maintained the child choked on a fruit snack. A doctor who testified for the defense said autopsy photos indicated injuries consistent with a child being given cardiopulmonary resuscitation after choking.

Deputy Attorney General Bob Mayer said after the verdict: “We couldn’t be more excited and thrilled for Tyrese. He finally gets the justice he deserved.”

A second-degree murder conviction carries a mandatory life sentence. Patterson is being held at the Minnehaha County jail until his sentencing, which is likely to come within the next two months.

Read the rest at Associated Press.