Toddler Homicide Investigation Ongoing

The investigation into the death of Nayla J. Hodnett, the 16-month-old toddler who died on April 17 from an apparent beating, is still ongoing.

According to Captain Robert F. Samuelson, division commander of the Jamestown Police Department, Nayla’s mother and a local man – with whom she had an on-again, off-again relationship- are continuing to be investigated.

“We’re (also) waiting on evidence to come back from the forensics lab,” said Samuelson, referencing specifically a number of cellphones recovered at Nayla’s residence – 218 1/2 Newland Ave. – that belonged to her mother and her mother’s boyfriend.

On the night of April 16, Nayla was taken to WCA Hospital’s emergency room by her mother before being transferred to Women & Children’s Hospital of Buffalo via Starflight for further treatment.

She later died of her injuries the following day. An autopsy at Erie County Medical Center determined the cause of death was a homicide.

“The child died of blunt force trauma, so basically the child was beaten to death,” said Samuelson, who further indicated that it was an isolated incident.

A 3-year-old child who was also living at the Newland Avenue residence was taken in by Child Protective Services.

Anyone with additional information on Nayla’s death is advised to contact the JPD at 483-7537 or leave an anonymous tip at 483-8477 (Tips).