Two women face charges of child abuse and neglect after police say that the younger woman burned over 12% of her child’s body. The mother is accused of pouring bleach and scalding hot water on her two-year-old daughter, burning her face and neck. The young girl was brought to the hospital on Saturday, December 13 at about 9:30 p.m., over 24 hours after the abuse occurred.
The child’s grandfather exposed the abuse by reporting to police that the mother, 25-year-old Katie Grimes, would not let him see the child when he came to pick up his son’s other children. During the visit with his grandchildren, they told him that their baby sister had been burned with hot water. The children are quoted as saying that the child â€œscreamed really loudâ€ when Grimes changed her clothes.
Naturally, the concerned grandparents immediately returned to the child’s home and confronted Grimes. When they asked about what happened, she told them â€œitâ€™s bad, but itâ€™s none of your business.â€
Police say that Grimes has not been consistent with her story. At first Grimes told case investigators that she was cleaning Saturday afternoon. She said that she filled two small trash cans half-full of hot water and industrial strength bleach, and put them in the bathtub. She said she wasn’t in the room when her daughter was burned, but she could hear the screaming. She insists that the daughter had poured the water on herself. She didn’t take her to the hospital because she says she treated the burns with ice and antibiotic ointment.
Her account of the incident changed however in a later conversation. Grimes told police that the child was actually burned a day before on Friday evening, December 12. According to the probable cause statement, Grimes told police she is sometimes frustrated, and when asked if the frustration gets the best of her, she said, â€œyes.â€
51-year-old Karen Wynn, Katie Grimes’s mother, is also being charged with abuse and neglect for failing to report the burns. The probable cause document says Karen Wynn answered the door when the police came to inquire about the child. She told police Grimes woke her up at 7:30 a.m. on Saturday and told her the child had poured hot bleach water on herself. Wynn claims that she told her daughter to take the child to the hospital because her eyes were almost completely swollen shut by the afternoon. She said Grimes refused to listen to her, but neither one of them made any attempt to get the child medical treatment. Wynn changed her story as well, initially telling detectives that she was not present when the incident occurred. Later she amended her statement and said that she was there. Wynn said she wishes she would have called 911, but was afraid because of a previous investigation by the Childrenâ€™s Division.
An Uncle said that said when the little girl was just an infant, her and her siblings were taken away from Grimes. She recently regained custody of the children again. A child services investigator spoke with the toddler about the burns. The little girl told the investigator two times that, â€œMommy is meanâ€. She said the bathtub water burned her, and â€œMommy did it.â€
Grimes entered a not guilty plea and was given a $150,000 cash bond. Wynn also entered a not guilty plea and was given $100,000 bond.