A Moorhead, Minnesota, father allegedly put hot sauce in his 2-month-old daughter's eyes.
From April 10 to May 30, Shawn Michael Foltz, 31, is accused of abusing the baby. On May 30, the child was brought to the Essentia Health emergency room by her mother. Police officers saw that she had dark bruises over both eyes, red marks on her back, and a bruise on her shoulder, the Duluth News Tribune reports.
There was also a red mark on the baby's chest, just below her chin, according to Valley News Live.
The criminal complaint against Foltz states that the mother told police that her daughter and three-year-old son had been in the care of their father earlier in the evening before she went to the emergency room. The mother said that Foltz told her the child's injuries were sustained by her brother hitting her with a toy gun, according to the Duluth News Tribune.
Before the mother picked up the baby from Foltz, he sent her a text message with a picture that showed the child had red, swollen eyes and was foaming at the mouth. In a text he reportedly said that the baby did not look as bad as the pictures portrayed and that she was fine.
Speaking with police, Foltz said the baby's injuries were from him snapping her in the face with a towel. He also said that out of frustration over his daughter crying, he used a wooden spoon and a piece of vinyl flooring to hit her on the bottom.
While trying to feed the baby, Foltz said that he had a hard time getting the bib under her chin and thus put all of his fingers on her chest and pressed down hard, causing the red marks, the Valley News Tribune reports.
He admitted to police that he blamed his daughter's injuries on her brother because he felt his wife would leave him if she knew what he had done to the child.
Foltz also admitted that since the child had been born he had abused her repeatedly. The abuse allegedly included rubbing hot sauce and cayenne pepper in her nose, mouth, and eyes, pinching her behind the legs and feet when he was changing her diaper to get her to cry, and pinching her nose and holding her mouth closed, blocking her from getting air.
Foltz is charged with four felonies: neglect of a child; malicious punishment of a child; and two counts of third-degree assault.
In the criminal complaint, Foltz is also accused of spraying the child with hot water that caused burns and throwing fireworks in her face, according to the Duluth News Tribune.
Foltz told police that while at work, he would think about ways to harm his daughter.