Police arrested a Missouri couple after their baby was hospitalized with bite marks, a broken nose, ruptured ear drums and other injuries.
"In my 16 years, this is the worst physical child abuse case I've ever worked," said detective Tony Stuart, reports Daily Mail.
According to the Troy Missouri Police Department's Facebook news release, Brandon Johnson and Kristen Hopper face child abuse charges and are being held on a $250,000 cash-only bond and a $100,000 cash-only bond respectively.
Prosecutors charged Johnson with three counts of child abuse causing serious physical injury, while charging Hopper with one.
According to Johnson's statements to the police, he had taken a nap with his 11-month-old son on the living room couch. When he woke up at 5 a.m., he found both of them covered in blood.
"It was now that Johnson noticed both he and his son were covered in blood," police allege in their news release. "Johnson advised his son had blood all over his face and hands, and appeared to have a cut along the right side of his head. Johnson used baby-wipes and cleaned the blood off his son. He advised he then also changed his son out of the blood-soaked 'onesie.'"
Asked why he did not immediately call the authorities, Johnson said he "freaked out" and didn't know what to do. Johnson said that after his wife came home, he called his mother, who then contacted the police.
Authorities found the bruised baby with human bite marks on his body, blood inside his nose and both ears, significant injuries inside his mouth, and cuts to his head and face.
Scans revealed the baby did not suffer brain damage. He is now in protective custody.
News of the crime disturbed many nationwide.
"They need to be locked away indefinitely," wrote one person in Daily Mail's comments section. "Fortunately, that child will probably have no recollection of this barbarism. I just hope he recovers fully."
However, some were more sympathetic towards the parents.
"Her boyfriend is mentally ill and needs to never be near his child (or any child for that matter) ever again," said one commenter on the Troy Missouri Police Department's Facebook post. "Kristen doesn't deserve this, I'm sure she is completely destroyed by all of it, as we all are. I'm not saying that mistakes were not made, I'm saying that Kristen is a good person.... that got into a bad relationship with the individual responsible for this tragedy."
Sources: Daily Mail, Troy Missouri Police Department/Facebook, St. Louis Post-Dispatch / Featured Image: Klaus With K/Wikimedia Commons / Embedded Images: Jacob Windham/Wikimedia Commons, Patrick Denker/Wikimedia Commons