Police have arrested a man and a woman accused of child abuse after their newborn was hospitalized with multiple broken bones and bite marks.
Phoenix detectives were called to Phoenix Children’s Hospital on August 1st after a two-month-old baby was brought in with several bone fractures and had bite marks on an arm and a leg.
The baby’s parents, 21-year-old Stephanie Komphabay and 24-year-old James Lawson III were interviewed by police regarding the child’s injuries and had an explaination for the injuries. Investigators proceeded with obtaining a search warrant on Lawson’s and Komphabay’s cell phones and discovered pictures of the child with injuries dating back to July 1st.
Court documents detailed “These injuries consisted of bruises to the face, swelling to an eye, bloody lip, and an abrasion on the forehead.”
Upon further investigation, detectives learned Lawson had had previously searched “If you choke baby hit the head get lump” and “can you put ice on newborn head.” Lawson claimed the baby sustained the injuries from the newborn “fighting him and scratching herself.”
Documents show that prior to the baby being brought to Phoenix Children’s Hospital, on Aug. 1, Komphabay took the baby to a pediatric appointment for a swollen leg. Komphabay allegedly told investigators it was at that appointment that Lawson told Komphabay “do not tell anyone” and to “keep her mouth shut” regarding the child’s injuries.
According to court documents, Komphabay confessed to police she witnessed Lawson abusing the child.
Court documents detail that “When the victim would cry, [Lawson] would grab the victim by the jaw area with both hands, squeeze the mouth shut, lifting the victim by the jaw area causing both feet to dangle while stating he knew what he was doing.” Komphabay told police that she made the decision to stop questioning Lawson about the baby’s injuries because he would get very upset and defensive.
The abuse took place for over a month and Komphabay, the child’s mother, did not report or make any attempts to stop Lawson from causing the baby more severe injuries.
Lawson and Komphabay were both arrested on Oct. 5 with charges of child abuse.
The child has been released from the hospital and is in the custody of the Department of Child Safety.