A Mississippi man who fatally beat a 3-year-old girl because she couldn’t correctly answer questions about numbers told investigators that “this was a tough world and she had to be tough if she wanted to survive,” Meridian Police Chief Benny Dubose said Monday.
Joshua Salovich was charged with capital murder, meaning he could face the death penalty, and held without bail. Detectives testified in an initial court appearance that the 25-year-old boxer-in-training beat Bailey Salovich at maximum force with a bamboo rod, a cellphone cord and his hands.
When investigators asked Salovich how hard he had hit the child, on a scale of 1 being a tap and 10 being as hard as he could, “he rated them all 10s, with no hesitation,” Dubose said.
At one point, the girl went to the bathroom on herself and that led to more punishment, authorities said. WTOK reported that the girl’s mother was in another room with the door closed watching TV.
Dubose said that in his decades of police work, it’s unusual for someone to freely admit abusing a child as Joshua Salovich did.
“He was pretty straightforward about what he did and why he did it,” Dubose said.
Salovich’s court-appointed lawyer didn’t immediately respond to a phone message and an email seeking comment Monday evening. WTOK reported that Salovich is not the girl’s biological father, but…