A three-month-old baby in Ind. suffered a seizure and became unresponsive, so her 26-year-old father shook her violently enough to create even worse damage, according to police in Kokomo. The father, 26-year-old Gary Peterson, was arrested on a Class B felony neglect of a dependent resulting in serious bodily injury charge, according to a May 13 report from WISHTV.
Peterson told police in Kokomo that his baby daughter started crying back on that tragic day in March; so the father went to prepare a bottle for her. When he returned to his daughter with her bottle, the child had stopped crying and “appeared lifeless on the couch.” The father said that he picked his daughter up and talked to her in an attempt to get her to wake up. Peterson told police when he couldn’t wake the baby up, that’s when he began shaking her. Police also said that Peterson denied that he shook his daughter prior to her suffering a seizure.
The baby was taken to Community Howard Regional Health with injuries severe enough to have her airlifted to Riley Hospital for Children at IU Health. According to The Kokomo Tribune, doctors at Riley Hospital communicated with the Indiana Department of Child Services, “who investigated the incident for possible child abuse,” that as a result of being shaken the baby ended up with a broken rib, a retinal hemorrhage behind one her eyes and bleeding on her brain.
Doctors said the brain bleeding could result in permanent brain damage.
According to charging documents, Peterson stated that he neglected to tell doctors initially that he shook his daughter “because he was scared. “ Police arrested the father on May 10 and transported him to the Howard County Jail.