GREENWOOD, Ind. — Police in Greenwood arrested a man for battery after a skeletal exam revealed an infant had 19 current or healing fractures.
Officers were dispatched to a home in Greenwood on April 14 when a woman called police after noticing her grandchild had a burn mark on his right shin and a “knot” on his left shin.
According to court documents, the woman told investigators that the boy’s father Colton Johnson, 22, had been caring for the child all day.
That evening, the infant was taken to St. Francis Hospital to determine if he had a broken left leg.
A family case manager from the Department of Child Services was then contacted due to the injuries and “inconsistent statements by persons present on how the observed injuries had been sustained,” according to court documents.
Once it was determined the child had a broken left tibia and fibula, he was transferred to Riley Hospital for Children to see a pediatric orthopedic doctor.
Riley staff then did a skeletal exam in which they discovered the infant had 19 current or healing fractures throughout his body, including those in his left leg.
When police talked to the child’s mother, court documents showed she told them she “did not notice any swelling” in the boy’s leg. Officers and medical personnel who responded to the scene both said they immediately noticed the swelling.
The mother says Johnson cares for the child when she’s not at home.
When asked about the other numerous injuries, investigators said the woman told them she had taken the child to the doctor four times since birth because “he had been fussy.”
Court documents also revealed the boy’s mother said the burn on his leg was from Johnson melting a “wax dab” in the bathroom. The court records described it as a form of marijuana that requires a “rig” with an open flame. She said the infant’s leg was burned when the wax melted and dripped into a bassinet outside the bathroom.
Police asked Johnson about the burn as well. He admitted it was from the hot wax from the wax dab and said he tried to wipe the wax off the child’s leg and later applied ointment to the burn.
Court documents show Johnson told police on multiple occasions, he has picked the child up forcefully and laid him down forcefully. He stated he has picked the infant up by his sides and shoulders and “yanked” on his arms and legs.
Investigators say Johnson become emotional and stated, “I must have broken those bones.” A detective with the Greenwood Police Department reported Johnson “takes responsibility and accountability for his actions” that caused the child’s injuries.
A nurse practitioner from Riley’s Child Protection Team told investigators the child’s injuries were the “worst case of physical abuse I have ever seen.”
The child had multiple fractures in both legs, as well as healed fractures in his ribs and both arms.
Police believe the abuse happened from late February to mid-April.
Johnson was arrested for battery, domestic battery causing serious bodily injury, and neglect of an dependent.