GAINES TOWNSHIP, Mich. — A 25-year-old western Michigan man has been charged in the beating death of his girlfriend’s 4-year-old son.

The Kent County sheriff’s office says Elis Nelson Ortiz-Nieves is expected to be arraigned Thursday on murder and first-degree child abuse charges.

Giovanni Mejias reportedly was not breathing Tuesday at his Gaines Township home, south of Grand Rapids, and rushed by paramedics to a hospital where he later died.

An autopsy determined that the boy died of blunt force trauma to his abdomen. Several older injuries also were found.

Authorities say Ortiz-Nieves had been living at the home about six months. He was arrested Tuesday.

Six other children under the age of 11 have been removed from the home. Authorities say Ortiz-Nieves took care of the children while his girlfriend was at work.

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