Authorities in Florida have arrested a 32-year-old father on suspicion of attempted murder after he allegedly crammed a baby wipe into his infant’s throat.
According to Fox News, Michael Hurley was arrested after the 5-month-old boy’s mother returned to the house and claimed she found the suspect with his fingers in the child’s mouth.
He allegedly claimed he was trying to retrieve something from the baby’s throat but that his fingers were too large to reach the obstruction.
The mother was not identified and it was unclear from available reports what her relationship with her baby’s father was at the time of the incident.
A neighbor at the apartment Tarpon Springs apartment complex reportedly heard the mother scream upon arriving home and rushed over to assist.
Cali’yah Anderson said Hurley “wasn’t doing anything” to assist the injured child, as reported by the Tampa Bay Times.
“It’s by divine intervention we were all there,” the neighbor said.
By the time authorities arrived, the wipe had been removed from the child’s throat, but he was reportedly bleeding from his mouth.
When first responders arrived, the baby was transported to an area hospital where he was listed in critical condition. Reports indicate he was placed on a respirator.
Police said the wipe, which was in a tight ball, could not have been lodged in the child’s throat through a “freak accident” as described by Hurley. He also allegedly told police that he could not clearly recall the circumstances.
Hurley was arrested and booked into Pinellas County Jail with bail set at $500,000. He is expected to face charges including attempted first-degree murder.
[Featured image: Michael Hurley, Tarpon Springs Police Department]