Raija Straight

‘Multiple skull fractures, a ruptured spleen’: Teen father snaps and beats baby girl to death, police say

An Iowa teen is behind bars after police say he beat his 8-month-old daughter to death on Friday afternoon.

People reports that 17-year-old Jayden Straight turned himself in after leaving the Mercy Medical Center in Des Moines, where his infant daughter, Raija, was taken after suffering a brutal beating with “serious inflicted injuries,” reportedly at the hands of her father. According to police, Straight turned himself in at around 2 a.m. on Saturday morning, 10 hours after his little girl was admitted into the hospital.

Raija passed away from her injuries on July 15, according to a family member who set up a GoFundMe memorial fund for the little girl.

According to a police affidavit, the baby had several broken ribs, numerous skull fractures, a ruptured spleen, and retina hemorrhaging. The attending physician at the hospital reportedly told authorities that someone intentionally inflicted injuries on Raija and it couldn’t be explained away as accidental.

Jayden Straight [Photo: Des Moines Police Department]
“I heard it was described as [being similar to] an eight-month-old child being dropped off the roof of a house. It is pretty brutal,” Des Moines Police Department Sgt. Paul Parizek said.

The police affidavit also explained that Straight was the only person around the baby when the injuries occurred. The suspect reportedly couldn’t explain why his daughter was fatally injured.

“According to Jayden no other persons were around Raija that day, and was unable to provide any explanation as to how Raija received these injuries”

Meanwhile, Straight’s grandmother, Carla Mickael, said that her grandson is being punished for something she thinks he didn’t do, according to ABC13. Mickael said Straight made Raija his first priority and would never intentionally harm her. Mickael said she felt the child’s mother harmed Raija, but police stated at this time, the only person in custody and charged with the child’s death is Straight.

“I think he’s being wrongfully accused of something that he never did. He had noticed some bruising on the baby’s ribs after he got home. He knew something was wrong. He probably should have done something about that.”

Straight, who prosecutors will try as an adult, is being held at the Polk County jail on a $750,000 bond. He’s due back in court on July 25.

[Feature Photo: Raija Straight/GoFundMe]