MEMPHIS, Tenn. — The father of a baby girl is speaking out about the death of his daughter and the shocking reason his little girl is gone.
John Floyd has spent every day since October 15, 2018 thinking about his precious baby girl. Floyd is the father of 20-month-old Royalty Marie Floyd, a beautiful and innocent little girl who was brutally murdered in Shaw, Mississippi.
Bolivar County Sheriff’s deputies say Royalty was repeatedly stabbed and put in a hot oven alive.
The baby’s grandmother, Carolyn Jones, is now charged with her murder.
“I was on the job, typically working. I’m an average day person. I received a call, and I was told that Royalty was no longer with us,” Floyd said.
The phone call was from Royalty’s grandfather.
“I took it as if she was with her aunt or uncle, something like that. Until they got around to saying that she was deceased and they were told that the grandmother stabbed her,” he said.
That was the moment Floyd’s life changed forever. He couldn’t wrap his mind around what he was hearing.
“When I was told that she was gone, I wasn’t trying to hear nothing nobody had to say. I was mad, pissed off, wanting to get revenge,” he said.
A small pink house on Martin Luther King Drive hold the chilling secrets leading up to Royalty’s murder. The house is located less than a mile from the Shaw Police Department.
According to investigators, it wasn’t until Jones’ twin brother asked about the toddler that the grandmother told him she was in the oven.
Police say Jones’ brother drove to the Shaw Police Department for help.
According to the police chief, when the officer arrived, the stove was sideways with a counter top blocking the oven door.
The stove was turned on. Royalty was still inside.
Her body was so badly burned that she had to have a closed casket at her funeral.
“The casket, knowing that she was in it and I can’t see her,” Floyd said.
Floyd thinks about his baby girl every day. He remembers the moment he first laid eyes on her.
“In the beginning she was looking more like Momma. Then I stated looking at her little cheek bones and I said ‘No. that’s me. That’s me right there,” he said. “I would hold her and stuff, and she didn’t cry. None of that stuff.”
Floyd says he first met Carolyn Jones, Royalty’s grandmother, when the baby was born. He says she was like your average grandmother.
“She was warm and friendly. You never would’ve thought she would have done something like that,” he said. “But at the same time, I want to say it’s really hard to predict somebody and what they will or won’t do until they do it.”
Floyd says after Royalty was born Jones volunteered to babysit so Royalty’s mother could return to work.
“We seen on the news previously where the kids were being left behind by the daycare center. Found in a van, left at a park. And this was just like the month previously, before she had the baby. We decided not to go with a daycare.”
When asked if Jones has any mental issues, Floyd had this to say.
“I have heard something about a medication. Don’t know what it was. I can’t sit here and tell you that there was a mental problem or nothing like that.”
Royalty’s mother declined our request for an interview but posted messages to her Facebook page just one day after Royalty’s murder.
The messages read, “I’m being told that my mother stabbed and baked her in the oven. But my mother loves my daughter. She always treated Royalty like Royalty, and everybody that knows us knows that.”
Those were painful words from a mother still trying to make sense of the murder of her innocent little girl. Now a father just wants answers.
“I lost my daddy in May, then I lost my little girl in October, two days before my birthday. You tell me, 2018 just wasn’t my year,” Floyd said.
Neighbors told us Royalty’s toys were placed in a garbage can in front of Jones’ house at least a week before the child’s death.
For now, Jones remains locked up in the Bolivar County Jail on a $500,000 bond.