A 21-month-old Minneapolis girl was in critical condition Tuesday after suffering severe head injuries and broken bones in the family’s home.
The life-threatening injuries “do not appear to be the result of an accident,” according to Minneapolis police spokesman John Elder. As of Tuesday, no arrests had been made, he said.
The baby was in the care of her father when she was injured, said the baby’s mother, Rae’Chelle Hall, who left for work about 10 a.m. Sunday. About 4 p.m., the baby’s father called her to say that the child was in the hospital, Hall said.
“The doctors have told me she’s in a dangerous state,” Hall said. “She’s on life support.”
Rae’Ana Hall’s ribs are broken, her thighs are bruised and her pelvic bone was fractured, Hall said. “It was like she was kicked or hit with something,” she said. “Her head injury was so significant that it appears she was struck in the head with an object or her head was struck against something with strong force. … Her eyes look like someone hit her in the face.”
“I break down every time I see her,” said Hall, who has stayed by her baby’s side since Sunday. “I just can’t believe this.”
The baby has often spent time alone with her father without any incident, she said. But she has forbidden the baby’s father from coming to the hospital.
Hall’s sister, sister, Marketa Gentry, said she had babysat the little girl the night before. “She was fine, playing around and everything,” she said.
The doctors said the injuries indicate that the girl was beaten and that “every [injury] on her was fresh,” Gentry said. “Now we just have to pray and watch her.”
Elder said police have interviewed a number of people and that the mother has been cooperative.
“We do not have any warrants out at this point,” he said.
Hall said the baby’s father, who has been interviewed by police, has changed his story numerous times. Messages through social media were left Tuesday afternoon with the father seeking comment about his daughter’s injuries.
Hall said Rae’Ana seemed fine when she left for work on Sunday. “I gave her a kiss and said, ‘I love you.’ And then I gave her another kiss and left a lipstick mark on her lips. She loves lipstick.”
Rae’Ana, with her chubby cheeks and bright eyes framed by long eyelashes, was always giddy and playful, her mother said. “When we get on the bus, she waves to everyone,” Hall said. “Our family says she’s everybody’s baby.”
“We have faith that she will pull through,” Hall said.