Bond set for Deridder mom accused of shaking baby

By Crystal Price - bio | email

DERIDDER, LA (KPLC) - A bond of $100,000 has been set for the Deridder woman accused of abusing her one month old child.

Twenty year old Jessica Edwards of Deridder remains in jail and has been charged with second degree cruelty to a juvenile.

Her one month old child has been sent to an LSU hospital for further testing.

Edwards was arrested on Friday after investigators say her baby was in the hospital with a broken leg and signs of a Shaken Baby Syndrome.

Shaken Baby Syndrome is type of child abuse that happens when a caregiver violently shakes an infant and causes acceleration-deceleration injuries.

"This is very serious and babies can have very serious long term side effects," said Dr. Jon Gray, an ER physician at Lake Charles Memorial Hospital.

Dr. Gray said the injuries are most severe in the child's eyes and brain.

These injuries can ultimately lead to permanent visual loss, permanent brain damage (cerebral palsy), and there's even a 20% to 25% chance of death.

Hospitals across the country see somewhere between 1,200 and 1,600 of these cases in a single year.

Dr. Gray feels the best way to stop this is by educating the public about the illness.

"Baby's are fragile," said Dr. Gray. "The least amount of trauma can often times cause these severe injuries."

If you are concerned about the welfare of a particular child in your community, you can call the Children's Welfare and Protection 24-hour confidential hot-line at 491-2545.

Other helpful sources are listed below:

KIDLINE (for parents in crisis) - 1-800-244-5373

BEST START (learn parenting skills and group counseling) - 1-337-480-2667

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