Calvin Pitts & Amanda Deleon charged even though coroner doesn't know what killed baby

Update below: Calvin Pitts and Amanda Deleon were busted on charges of felony child abuse even though the Denver coroner couldn't immediately determine why three-month-old Sanai Pitts died. Now we know why they were taken into custody anyhow. According to arrest affidavits, the child's injuries were so severe and plentiful that it'll take more study to determine which one killed him.

Neighbors say the child cried frequently, and when police arrived at the apartment on Saturday morning following reports that the boy wasn't breathing, they discovered shocking evidence of mistreatment -- two broken legs, a broken left wrist, a burn on one leg and scabs, abrasions and tears on and around his head.

The suspects' explanation for this startling potpourri of damage? In the affidavit, Deleon, 21, says the baby let out a cry when she tried to move him from his stomach a few weeks ago -- possible evidence of prior injury or a break that happened at that moment. As for the burn on his leg, which was estimated to have been in the second- or third-degree range, she said skin had come off after she'd applied a washcloth soaked in hot water. But Pitts, 28, had a different story. He claimed he'd wrapped the leg in a towel he'd heated in a microwave for two minutes.

The child also had a burn on his right foot, which Pitts chalked up to him accidentally dropping a lit cigarette.

Pitts and Deleon should be familiar with law enforcement by now. He's done time for a drug conviction and has a sex assault on his record. Her busts touch on assault, robbery and drugs.

They're in new territory now, however. The Denver District Attorney's Office is reportedly mulling first-degree murder charges.

Update, 8:34 a.m. June 17: The first charge against Calvin Pitts and Amanda Deleon are in, and they're not murder one: The Denver DA's office has charged each of them with child abuse resulting in serious bodily injury.

But that's unlikely to be the final word on the subject. The DA's office notes that the Denver coroner's inquiry into what actually killed three-month-old Sanai Pitts is continuing, as is other investigative work. Once that's complete, additional charges aren't just possible, but likely.

Int he meantime, the pair are slated to be formally advised of the charges against them on Monday, June 20. Their bond is set at $50,000 apiece. Look below for booking photos and our initial coverage.

Original item, 12:38 p.m. June 14: Calvin Pitts, 28, and Andrea Deleon, 21, have been arrested on suspicion of child abuse resulting in death related to the passing of three-month-old Sanai Pitts this weekend.

Even after an autopsy, however, Denver coroner's office reps say the cause and manner of the child's death are still pending and must be studied further to pin down.

The Denver Police Department reportedly stresses that signs of trauma dating to various times in the infant's short life were evident, and neighbors say the child cried for hours on end, for whatever reason. Moreover, both Pitts and Deleon have criminal pasts; he did time on a drug beef and has a sexual assault arrest on his record, while her rap sheet includes busts for assault and robbery as well as drugs.

Nonetheless, the way Sanai Pitts died remains a mystery -- at least for now.

Look below to see larger copies of the couple's booking photos, as well as a Fox31 report on the case.


More from our Colorado Crimes archive: "Terance Wilson says he didn't sucker punch Nathan Engle to death, despite his broken hand."

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Michael Roberts has written for Westword since October 1990, serving stints as music editor and media columnist. He currently covers everything from breaking news and politics to sports and stories that defy categorization.
Contact: Michael Roberts