GAINESVILLE, Fla. (WFLA) — Two Florida parents have been charged with child abuse after police said they waited days to take their baby to the hospital with life-threatening injuries .
Emma Belle Smithey, 19, took her 4-month-old son to UF Health Hands Children’s Hospital on Tuesday when she accidentally hit the baby’s head against the door frame, according to an arrest report obtained by the Gainesville Sun. I said sorry.
The baby reportedly suffered “significant trauma” including a cerebral hemorrhage, bleeding in the eye, and bruises on his neck, collarbone, behind the ear, lower back and hands.
Smithee’s story later changed, according to Gainesville Police. , 22, claimed he accidentally hit the boy’s head against the door frame on January 1.
This contradicted Smith’s account of events. He reportedly told officers on Dec. 30 that the baby was “abnormally loud and wouldn’t stop crying,” and held the baby firmly to his chest until it stopped.
Smith reportedly told police that this may have been due to bruises found on the baby’s neck and that he may have shaken the baby too hard. reportedly dropped the baby into the crib from an “unusual height”.
The baby woke up the next morning “crying hysterically,” Smith told officers. According to his arrest report, as he picked up the baby, he quickly spun his body and reportedly “banged” his head against the door frame of his bathroom.
Officers said Smith claimed he didn’t mean to hurt the baby and was just trying to stop him from crying.
Smithee told officers the boy had been lethargic, crying and vomiting for days before taking him to the hospital. According to his arrest report, he also experienced several seizure-like episodes in which he lost control of his limbs and became unresponsive.
Police said they didn’t know if the baby would survive. Medical staff at UF Health told officers that waiting days for his parents to bring him in for treatment contributed to the severity of his injuries.
Smith was charged with child neglect with serious physical harm, cruelty to a child, and aggravated child abuse, and Smithy was charged with child neglect with serious physical harm.