Mother Facing Neglect Charges Following Infant’s Death

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In Beloit, Wis, the mother of a 2-month-old infant who died from injuries sustained by child abuse, is now facing child neglect charges.

Jessica Nelson, who is 29 years of age, was charged in Rock County Court on Thursday.

On March 20, police were called to a home on Euclid Avenue for an unresponsive child. Court documents say 31-year-old Deanthony Hodges was watching the infant at the time. The infant died 6 days later.

Investigators say that they spoke with a doctor who says the infant had a skull fracture and a brain bleed. This was said to be caused by significant head trauma.

The Rock County Medical Examiner determined the cause of death was child abuse.

Hodges was charged in a September 2016 case with domestic abuse, in which Nelson was the victim. The file says Nelson was 3-months pregnant and Hodges tried to strangle her. The document also says Nelson said Hodges had abused her in the past, but it was the first time she called police

Authorities contacted Nelson’s grandparents who are the current guardians of Nelson’s other children.

According to the criminal complaint, Child Protective Services (CPS) placed the children in their care after a 5-year-old child received a lacerated kidney. The cause of that injury was however undetermined. Nelson’s other child allegedly told CPS that Hodges had hurt the five-year-old.

Authorities say that Nelson told them she told people she would not leave the infant in Hodges care because that is what people wanted to hear. Detectives say she admitted to telling CPS she was not going to let Hodges watch the infant as she wanted to look better in the eyes of CPS workers.

Hodges watched the infant for 6 of the 7 days Nelson worked. Nelson reportedly went back to work from maternity leave on March 13.

Bond of $20 000 was set for Nelson on Thursday and her next court date is in May.

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