CHESTER The Chester man in jail for allegedly stabbing his pregnant girlfriend in April was charged late Wednesday in the death of the couples unborn son.
Chester police arrested Aris Nichols, 39, on the new charge of death or injury to a child in utero due to commission of a violent crime, prosecutors said.
The charge, enacted into state law in 2006, carries up to 30 years in prison upon conviction.
Brittany Jordan, 21, was several months pregnant when she was stabbed April 26 at the mobile home the couple shared just west of downtown Chester.
She was hospitalized after the attack, but has since been released. The unborn child, a son named Tavaris, did not survive the attack.
Prosecutors took more than five weeks to charge Nichols in the unborn childs death largely due to the ongoing investigation, research into the fairly new and largely untested law and necessary talks with medical professionals who treated Jordan after she was stabbed, said Doug Barfield, Sixth Circuit Solicitor.
The charge does not require an allegation that Nichols was trying to kill the unborn baby, Barfield said. The allegation that the unborn child died because of the stabbing attack is sufficient to make the charge, he said.
The charge fits what we allege Mr. Nichols did, Barfield said, declining further comment.
Tavaris was buried in a Chester County cemetery for the indigent a few days after the attack on his mother.
Brittany Jordans family, many of whom had said after the stabbing that they wanted justice for both Jordan and the unborn baby, declined comment on the new charges Wednesday night.
Nichols and Jordan had two other young children together, but those children were not in the home at the time of the stabbing.
An attempted murder warrant alleges that sometime between 8:30 a.m. and about 1:30 p.m. April 26, Nichols stabbed Jordan in the face and neck.
The police report on the incident states that when officers arrived, Nichols was inside the mobile home, and Jordan was in a bedroom bleeding from a severe cut.
Nichols a convicted felon with a record dating back to his teen years on assault and drug charges, who has served years of prior prison time was originally charged with criminal domestic violence of a high and aggravated nature after the stabbing.
The attempted murder charge and a weapons charge were added a few days later. He remained jailed without bond at the Chester County Detention Center after the new charge was added Wednesday.
Nichols faces more than 65 years in prison if convicted of all charges.
His lawyer, Sixth Circuit Chief Public Defender Mike Lifsey, declined comment on the new charge Wednesday. He said his office was continuing its own investigation.