Phoenix man arrested in beating death of 2-year-old son

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By Mike Gertzman By Mike Gertzman

PHOENIX -- A Phoenix man is facing a first-degree murder charge in the beating death of his 2-year-old son last year.

Police arrested Luis Sanchez, 30, on Friday. He's accused of killing his son on Sept. 28, 2011 at their home in the area 48th Street and Broadway Road. At that time Sanchez said his son, Saul Sanchez, had fallen down the stairs and was unresponsive. Saul was transported to the hospital where he was pronounced deceased.

According to a spokesman for the Phoenix Police Department, the autopsy for Saul did not show any signs of an injury consistent with a fall down the stairs that would have resulted in his death. 

During the investigation a homicide detective assigned to the case found that Sanchez had a history of domestic violence in California and had violated his probation by moving with his family to Arizona.

The detective also found that, on the day of the incident, Sanchez had sent an urgent e-mail message to the child mother's at work, telling her to call him. She did not receive the message for approximately 45 minutes and that is when she called back. Sanchez said Saul was not breathing and she told him to call 911. That is when Sanchez called for help.

After obtaining this information, the detective re-interviewed Sanchez on March 9th, 2012. Police said he initially told the original story, but changed it several times. Ultimately Sanchez admitted that he had struck his son in the back several times, police said.

Sanchez said, according to police, that he struck his son because the boy said a bad word.

Based upon all of the information obtained in this investigation, Sanchez was arrested and booked into the Maricopa County Jail, charged with first-degree murder for the death of his son.