2010-01-14 / Front Page

Warfdsbg. Man Charged With Infant Abuse

Warfordsburg area man jailed

Nicholas McKee Nicholas McKee STAFF REPORT

A Warfordsburg area man remained in the Washington County Detention Center in lieu of $150,000 bond after being arrested last Friday on accusations he “vigorously” shook and as a result caused the death of his 5- week-old infant daughter.

Twenty-two-year-old Nicholas Ray McKee of 453 Flickerville Road was charged by the Washington County Sheriff’s Department with first-degree assault and first-degree child abuse.

The charges, according to a press release issued by the Sheriff’s Department, stem from an incident that occurred at 139 Washington Street, Hancock, on Sunday, January 3. Emergency personnel were dispatched to the home in response to a child suffering cardiac arrest.

At the time of the alleged abuse, McKee was reportedly residing at the address with his newborn daughter, Bella Evangline Appel-McKee, and the baby’s mother, Jordan Appel.

The baby was in McKee’s care at the time of the incident, and the injuries sustained by the baby are consistent with “nonaccidental trauma,” the Sheriff ’s Department reported.

The baby was transported to War Memorial Hospital located in Berkeley Springs, W.Va., before being transferred to the Children’s Hospital in Washington, D.C. She remained hospitalized and on life support until her death on January 9, the Sheriff’s Department stated in an updated press release.

Court documents filed in connection with the case allege the infant suffered brain injuries indicative of “trauma” and “vigorous shaking.” The tests and medical assessment were completed by the Freddie MAC Foundation Child and Adolescent Protection Center located at the Children’s National Medical Center.

Both the Sheriff’s Department and the Hancock Police Department received information from the Department of Social Services on January 6 concerning the baby suffering traumatic injuries. Prior to charges being filed against McKee, investigators spoke with family members, social services and hospital personnel. Their investigation is ongoing.

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