Note: we are republishing this story in light of recent reports that show child abuse has significantly increased during the COVID-19 pandemic. More on this here: https://www.usnews.com/news/health-news/articles/2021-10-08/study-confirms-rise-in-child-abuse-during-covid-pandemic
An Independence, Missouri, babysitter was arrested and charged after being accused of burning a toddler's hands.
Christian Johnston was babysitting the toddler when the incident occurred. When the parents returned to pick up their son the following Tuesday, his hands were wrapped in socks and gauze. The boy reportedly screamed when his parents attempted to take the bandages off.
The day before, 36-year-old Johnston informed the parents in a text that their son burned himself while reaching for a bowl of Ramen noodles. She also minimized the severity of the injuries and assured them that her friend’s husband was a doctor who could give the child medical attention.
When the parents returned home and realized they couldn’t remove the bandages, they took their son via ambulance to a nearby Children’s hospital.
“Once we got there, right away, you could tell the doctors, they were like, ‘yeah, we see ramen noodle burns all the time. This is not indicative of a ramen noodle burn,’” the boy’s father, Anthony Di Domenico, told WDAF. “It’s solely on his wrists, fully submerged and his hands, both hands, perfect lines where the burns stop.”
The parents said that their son might have to have skin taken from his thighs to replace the dead skin on the back of his hands.
“He knows he’s got ‘owies.’ He wants to go home so bad. He’s going stir crazy in there,” his mother, Hailey Mitchell, said.
Johnston, Mitchell said, has been taking care of her three children for nearly a year.
“I’m very angry. I’m hurt. I had full, complete trust with her. I never thought anything like this would happen.”
When police questioned Johnston about the incident at her home, they asked her to show them where the accident with the noodles occurred. She explained that the bowl was on the kitchen table in the dining room, and that she assumed the boy reached for the bowl and caused it to tip and spill on the floor. Authorities, however, found no evidence that the bowl of noodles was spilled - as the dirt on the ground did not indicate any recent cleaning.
Johnston was arrested and charged with endangering the welfare of a child in the first degree. Bond was set at $30,000.
“It breaks my heart to think of the fear and pain that precious baby is enduring as a result of this evil woman. I pray that God will heal him completely. That woman is sick and evil. She needs the Lord,” one reader commented on the site’s Facebook page.
“You hear these things happening way too much. Makes me feel so much better our 3 yr old grand daughter is either cared for by her parents or grand parents. I don't trust any of these day care centers either. You hear such horror stories,” another wrote.
“Burn her hands, what an insane person! Eye for an eye!!! Poor baby, hope everything is going to be ok with him,” another added.