Soldier Charged With Murder Of 8-Month-Old Daughter While Stationed At Fort Liberty

Sgt. Gabriel Ceville, an Army soldier stationed at North Carolina’s Fort Liberty, had a preliminary hearing this week after he was accused in the killing of his 8-month-old daughter.

Ceville is charged with unpremeditated murder and involuntary manslaughter following the 2023 death of Misty Delatorre, a spokesperson for the Army Office of Special Trial Counsel told HuffPost.

The spokesperson noted that Ceville is also charged with domestic violence, but that this is not connected to Misty.

Despite the serious allegations, Ceville has not been detained or discharged, the Army spokesperson said, adding that the “charges are merely allegations and Sgt. Ceville is presumed innocent until proven guilty.”

Alina Delatorre, Misty’s mother, told ABC’s WTVD that she “cannot grieve properly” while knowing that her “daughter’s murderer is walking free.”

“It is unbelievable that so much violence was inflicted onto an innocent 8-month-old baby,” she told the outlet.

Ceville denied harming the child while speaking to local news station WRAL.

A Fort Liberty sign is seen on June 2, 2023, in North Carolina.
A Fort Liberty sign is seen on June 2, 2023, in North Carolina. AP Photo/Karl B DeBlake

In February 2023, Ceville was residing at Fort Liberty, then known as Fort Bragg, with Misty in his care. Ceville allegedly said in text messages that his head hurt and Misty was screaming, and soon after said that Misty had thrown up and was unresponsive.

When Ceville called 911, he reported that the girl was not breathing, according to records cited by WTVD. The infant was airlifted to a hospital but was pronounced dead days later.

An autopsy report revealed that Misty had injuries around her eyes, and that authorities suspected foul play, according to WTVD. The autopsy determined that the infant died from blunt force trauma to her head and neck.

Alina Delatorre told WTVD that she had rushed to the hospital from California to see her child.

“I can’t ever forget the cold feeling that I felt holding her hand,” the mother said.

According to court records cited by WRAL, Misty’s parents had been involved in a custody battle in the weeks leading up to her death, with Ceville eventually gaining primary custody.

Under the custody judgment, Misty would spend six months out of the year with each parent — but she was just three days into her stay with Ceville when she was hospitalized, according to the outlet.

Since then, Alina Delatorre and her mother, Misty Bray, have worked to get justice for the 8-month-old.

“This is sad. I’m just devastated. I can’t believe it,” Bray told WTVD after this week’s hearing. “We don’t know how to feel. It’s just a lot.”

Need help? In the U.S., call 1-800-799-SAFE (7233) for the National Domestic Violence Hotline.