LARGO — A 23-year-old Clearwater man pleaded guilty Friday to second-degree murder in the death of a 9-month-old and was sentenced to 40 years in prison.
Joseph Oliver, who was looking after several toddlers in October 2011, told police he playfully tossed Aaliyah Siler in his Clearwater apartment and accidentally dropped her. But after that, police say, he got frustrated when she wouldn't stop crying. They say he snapped and took her into the bathroom, dropping her onto the tile floor. She suffered skull fractures and brain damage. After being hospitalized, she was soon taken off life support.
The plea agreement was worked out with defense attorneys and prosecutors. Oliver would have faced a mandatory life sentence if convicted of first-degree murder, as he was originally charged.