Police in South Carolina have arrested a 25-year-old man and charged him with causing the death of a 22-month-old girl as well as the injuring of her 3-year-old sibling.
Matthew Chappell is accused of homicide and child abuse in the June death of Gwynne Anne-Marie Hess, WYFF reports .
The girl's 3-year-old sister was injured Nov. 21, when Chappell allegedly pushed her into an object. She suffered a fractured skull and lost consciousness.
Chappell told deputies that he discovered blood on the 3-year-old girl at around 3 p.m. on Nov. 21. He added that he tried to contact the girl's mother, who had just left for work, but was unsuccessful.
While investigating the injury, officers uncovered enough evidence to charge Chappell with homicide by child abuse. The 25-year-old allegedly dropped Gwynne on the floor. She went into cardiac arrest and died in hospital.
Oconee County Coroner Karl Addis stated that Gwynne was admitted to hospital June 9. She died two days later on June 11, according to WSPA.
Addis added that officials were told at the time that she had choked on a gummy snack while crying.
After taking into account the information provided and conducting a medical evaluation, officials ruled Gwynne's death as accidental, resulting from respiratory complications.
However, after Gwynne's sibling was treated for her injuries Nov. 21, hospital staff contacted the coroner's office, according to deputies.
Chappell is now accused of dropping Gwynne on the floor while she had food in her mouth.
The 25-year-old lived with the mother of the two children, but is not their biological father.
Chappell was denied bond in both cases. The date for his next court appearance is yet to be determined.
The coroner's office and sheriff's office noted that investigations into the case are still ongoing, WHNS reported.
Police in Oklahoma were also involved in a child abuse case and arrested a man who allegedly shook his 2-month-old baby. Cody Walker was also accused of bouncing the child's head off a cabinet, causing what one investigator described as the worst skull fracture he had ever seen.
Police said Walker changed his story about what had happened several times before he confessed to inflicting the injuries.
Walker is being held in the Tulsa County jail, according to KOKI. Police involved in the case urged the public to be on the lookout for signs that someone has been violent with a baby.