A Pennsylvania man was arrested Thursday after he allegedly caused brain bleeding in a 6-month-old Westminster child, police said.
Jared Michael McAbee, 23, of Hanover, Pennsylvania, was charged with one count each of first-degree child abuse — severe physical injury, and second-degree child abuse. He is being held without bond following a Friday bail review, according to electronic court records.
According to the statement of probable cause, an investigator from the Carroll County Advocacy and Investigation Center responded to Carroll Hospital on Aug. 9 after injuries to the child caused emergency department staff concern over possible abuse.
McAbee and another caretaker for the child told the investigator that they had noticed the child’s injury that morning. The child was left with McAbee while the other caretaker went to work, but she then chose to leave early and take the child to a pediatrician out of concern. The pediatrician referred them to the emergency department, according to the statement.
Follow-up medical examination was conducted on Aug. 11 and 13, according to the statement. A CAT scan was found to be negative for brain injury, but additional bruising was noted, according to the statement.
On Aug. 15, the child was transported to Carroll Hospital by EMS after a man later identified as McAbee reported that the child was “limp” and “unresponsive.” A CAT scan was performed and revealed several areas of bleeding in the brain, according to the statement. A helicopter took the child to Johns Hopkins Hospital.
Investigators determined that the child had been left alone with McAbee contrary to the safety plan, according to the statement.
Investigators recorded that, while being interviewed, McAbee confessed to likely causing the bruising and brain injury. Previously, he had intentionally yanked on the straps to the child’s car seat while buckling it and had pushed the child’s face into his chest when the child would not stop crying, he said, according to the statement.
The morning of Aug. 15, McAbee said the child would not stop crying after being bottle fed. He sat the child on his leg and began burping the child, he said, but as the child continued to cry, he became frustrated and began to hit the child repeatedly on the back with his hand, according to the statement.
Investigators asked McAbee to recreate the motion on a doll of similar size to the child, and the doll’s head was thrown violently backward and forward as its back was struck, according to the statement.