A child was hospitalized over the weekend with serious injuries that investigators said they believe was the result of child abuse by a man who was watching the child.
Timothy Cassel, 19, was arrested Sunday on a first-degree felony charge of aggravated child abuse.
According to the arrest report, the child was injured sometime between Friday and Saturday evening while being watched by Cassel.
The report states the child’s mother picked up the child from Cassel’s home on Saturday night and took the child to Memorial Satilla Hospital in Waycross, Georgia, after noticing her child had bruises on the face. The child was then transferred to Wolfson Children’s Hospital in Jacksonville because it was determined the child not only had facial bruising but bruises along its spine, four broken ribs, a fractured skull and several broken brain bleeds consistent with shaken baby syndrome, according to investigators.
“It’s a tragic situation anytime you involve a child like this,” said News4Jax crime and safety expert Ken Jefferson.
Investigators said Cassel was later located asleep in the parking lot of the Journey Church. According to the report, a church member was checking on Cassel’s wellbeing when he woke up Cassel from his sleep. The report states that when Cassel woke up, he uttered that he had shaken and abused a child.
Cassel was taken into custody and driven to the Nassau County Sheriff’s Office, where he was questioned. Conversations between Cassel and the investigator were omitted from the arrest report, however, the report does state that a witness saw Cassel striking the child too hard on the back while burping the child.
On Monday morning, a judge set Cassel’s bond at $100,000.
As of Monday, there was no word on the child’s current condition.