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Man accused of killing boy, hiding body in freezer to face death penalty

Updated August 16, 2022 - 9:07 am

Prosecutors intend to seek the death penalty for a man accused of killing a 4-year-old boy whose body was found in a freezer at a Las Vegas home.

Brandon Toseland, 36, was arrested Feb. 22 after the body of his girlfriend’s son, Mason Dominguez, was found at his northeast valley home.

Mason’s mother, 28-year-old Dahsia Maldonado, has said that Toseland physically abused her and held her captive for months until she was able to sneak a note to school officials with her 7-year-old daughter.

In April, Chief Deputy District Attorney Michelle Fleck said prosecutors were considering pursuing capital punishment in the case. On Thursday, they filed a formal notice announcing their intent to seek a death sentence, court records show.

Fleck declined to comment on the case on Monday. Toseland’s defense attorney, Craig Mueller, did not reply to a request for comment.

Toseland has pleaded not guilty to murder; three counts of child abuse, neglect or endangerment resulting in substantial bodily harm; kidnapping of a minor resulting in substantial bodily harm; child abuse, neglect or endangerment; two counts of kidnapping; and two counts of battery constituting domestic violence by strangulation.

Maldonado has testified that in December, Toseland took Mason into a locked bedroom after the boy said he wasn’t feeling well. He then confined Maldonado to a bedroom, and she was often handcuffed when the two left the house, according to court records.

After Toseland’s arrest, investigators found a hole in the backyard that police suspect was intended as a grave.

Prosecutors have said Mason suffered a “constellation of internal injuries,” including blunt force trauma to his abdomen, bruising to his torso and extremities, and a bite mark to his left arm.

Maldonado has filed a wrongful death and negligence lawsuit against Toseland, who said in a counterclaim that Maldonado was aware Mason had died and had decided to help Toseland “preserve” the body.

The mother is not facing any criminal charges in Mason’s death. Lisa Rasmussen, an attorney representing Maldonado and her family, has said she denies the “fantastical claims made by Toseland.”

Toseland’s case is the third in August in which prosecutors have filed a notice of intent to seek the death penalty.

Earlier this month, prosecutors filed documents regarding their intent to seek capital punishment for 18-year-old Jordan Ruby and 20-year-old Jesani Carter, who are accused of killing two people during a string of robberies, as well as for Christina and Leon Gritz, who are accused of killing their 8-year-old son.

Contact Katelyn Newberg at knewberg@reviewjournal.com or 702-383-0240. Follow @k_newberg on Twitter.

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