Two separate and serious child abuse cases reported in less than two weeks
Reporter: Cory Marshall
TUCSON (KGUN9-TV) - Two separate child abuse cases in less than two weeks-- in both instances, a child was abused while the mother was away. The latest case happened Wednesday when emergency crews rushed a 3 1/2-month-old baby boy to the hospital. Police say it's a case of shaken baby syndrome.
9OYS spoke with a neighbor who didn't want to go on camera but described what she saw.
"We were just standing here talking and I saw them wheel the gurney by with an oxygen thing over the baby's face," a nearby neighbor said.
Twenty-five-year-old Tanner Brown has been arrested in connection with the case. Tucson Police say he was at home with the baby while the baby's mother was working.
Less than two weeks earlier, police arrested 23-year-old Jacob Fimbres after his girlfriend's 4-year-old son went into seizure. First responders found the boy's body covered in burns and bruises.
According to Tucson Police, there were 291 reports of physical child abuse in 2011.
Through September of this year there have been 244 reported cases.
Dr. Janel Lloyd with Catalina Pediatrics tells 9OYS she has seen quite a bit of abused children in her career.
"It's hard to say what happens in those instances but I think it's very likely that they just become overwhelmed with emotion and are not aware that they are actually damaging this little baby," Lloyd said.
She says the damage can be devastating. Infants that do survive are susceptible to development deficits--even blindness.
"This is a very tragic thing that can totally be avoided if someone can just step back and ask for help," Lloyd continued.
As of Wednesday, the infant remains in critical condition. There is no word on the extent of the 4-year-old's injuries.