Death of 8-year-old boy found in hotel bathtub ruled a homicide, examiner confirms

Mother, her common-law husband arrested in 8-year-old son’s death appear in court

HOUSTON – The death of an 8-year-old boy who was found dead in a hotel bathtub has been ruled a homicide by the Medical Examiner’s Office in Houston.

In March, Houston police responded to reports of a child drowning in a bathtub at the Quality Inn & Suites located at 2930 W. Sam Houston Parkway South.

Police said the boy’s mother said she and her common-law husband were asleep when the boy drowned in the bathtub.

After a brief investigation, police said they learned the boy experienced chronic physical abuse and torture, including deep ligature marks on both ankles and large patches of skin missing from his chest, upper arm, thighs.

A prosecutor with the Harris County District Attorney’s Office said patches of skin appeared to have been ripped from the boy’s body and pieces of duct tape with human hair on them were found in the motel room along with a pair of handcuffs.

The boy’s mother, 24-year-old Kayla Holzendorf, and her common-law husband, 28-year-old Dominique Lewis, were both arrested and charged with injury to a child and tampering with evidence.

Kayla’s mother, the boy’s grandmother, told KPRC 2 that she didn’t believe her daughter’s story added up.

“Yes, I think that they are responsible, Kayla and Dominique, and we just want justice for Keyontae. We want to know what happened,” Sheryl told KPRC 2 back in March.

There’s no word yet if the mother and her common-law husband will face more charges serious charges.

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