A North Carolina woman was accused of trying to kill her 3-month-old baby by squeezing and fracturing the infant’s skull while the father failed to seek medical care, according to reports.
“The mother actually took her fingers and pushed on the back of the child’s skull and, of course, at that age your skull is not completely formed yet and by doing so she made the child’s eyes bulge,” said Fayetteville police Sgt. Shawn Strepay, WTVD reported.
Amanda Hughes, 31, expressed “emotions of hatred, ill will and spite” during two horrific incidents, which landed the baby boy in a hospital, officials said.
She was charged with attempted first-degree murder, two counts of felony child abuse by intentional physical injury and two counts of felony child abuse by neglect.
Police also charged the child’s father, Alfie Dion Champagne, 48, and grandmother, Mary Hughes, 63, with two counts of abuse by neglect, according to WRAL.
Cumberland County DA Billy West said the charges are so egregious, he wanted high bonds for the parents to keep them from fleeing if they are sprung from jail before trial.
“We’re dealing with a child that was 3 to 6 months old and the most helpless in our society,” West said. “We’ve got to do what we can to get just in the case and get to the bottom of these allegations, but they’re very disturbing.”
District Court Judge Ed Pone raised the mom’s bond from $250,000 to $550,000 and Champagne’s bond from $50,000 to $400,000. Mary Hughes was released on $10,000 bond.
The first incident was alleged to have occurred on March 12, when Amanda Hughes squeezed the baby’s head as hard as she could, causing the child to suffer fluid on the brain and a skull fracture.
The second incident occurred on April 23, officials said, after the child was in the custody of Champagne and Mary Hughes, and was staying at the grandmother’s home.
“The allegation is that, in April, after they had custody, that there was another period of abuse where the mother had access to the child and the opportunity to abuse the child,” West said.
“Further injuries were alleged to have happened to the child on that occasion, and medical attention was not sought.”
The injuries were discovered May 1 when a foster caregiver noticed the baby suffering seizures and took him to Cape Fear Valley Medical Center.
Hospital officials found the injuries and notified authorities, WRAL reported.