Baby found with nearly 100 rat bites, parents charged

Baby found with nearly 100 rat bites, parents charged

Baby found with nearly 100 rat bites, parents charged

- The parents of a newborn in Arkansas were arrested this week after their 15-day-old baby was found to have 100 rodent bites, according to the Magnolia Police Department.

An ER nurse explained that the child was 15 days old and weighed about five pounds.

Her parents Erica Shyrock, 19, and her 18-year-old boyfriend, Charles Elliott, were arrested and subsequently charged with first-degree endangering the welfare of a minor.

Police were called after the baby was brought to a local hospital, the release said.

Based on the interview with the couple, Shryock prepped the baby to sleep in a bassinet at around 5:30 a.m.

Bloody rat footprints were visible in the crib and the infant had nearly 100 bites and injuries, which a doctor claims would have taken hours to occur.

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The doctor at the hospital said it would have taken hours for the rats to feed on the baby to do such damage. A doctor reportedly told police the damage to the girl's skin was so severe "it would have taken hours to occur and [the patient] would have been in distress during the process". The infant had to undergo a facial reconstruction surgery to close a 1-inch wide wound on her head.

Investigators searched the couple's home and found blood in the infant's crib, bloody rat prints, and rodent droppings on a nearby table.

When questioned by police, the parents said the baby had been sleeping in a bassinet in the same room with them.

Scared, the couple took their daughter to the hospital where the doctors conducted a reconstructive surgery to close the massive wound to her forehead. The only explanation is that the parents either were not home or were incapacitated in such a way that they could not respond to the screams of their child.

Elliott told police that he knew rats were in the house that the family shared with another woman and that they had done nothing to take care of the problem, the affidavit said.

Should Shyrock or Bennett make bond, they will face a condition that they have no contact with children under the age of 12.

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