Father: Abused 1-year-old son doing 'remarkably better'

29-year-old babysitter released from jail on bond

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Jacksonville Sheriff's Office booking photo of Rickey Valentine

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - The father of a 1-year-old boy who police say was abused at Ribault Bay Village Navy Family Housing in Mayport earlier this week says his son is doing "remarkably better."

Police said the boy suffered severe head trauma Wednesday morning and had bruising and swelling on the back of his head from ear to ear.

The boy's father said Friday the swelling has gone down, and he expected his son to be released from the hospital soon.

The father said his son was cleared to travel, and he will take him and his three other children to Tennessee, where he lives.

The boy's babysitter, 29-year-old Rickey Valentine, was arrested after police said evidence showed he violently shook the child, who was unresponsive when rescuers first arrived at the home.

The boy's father said Valentine lived next door and has since bonded out of jail.

The Department of Children and Families is investigating.

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