Breaking News Blog

Saturday, Aug 09 2014 12:12 PM

Baby hospitalized, two arrested in scalding case

By THE BAKERSFIELD CALIFORNIAN

Two Bakersfield adults are facing felony child abuse charges after a toddler they were babysitting was hospitalized with serious burns Friday.

According to a press release from the Bakersfield Police Department, BPD officers went to the 3600 block of Ashe Road in southwest Bakersfield at 3:16 p.m. to assist Bakersfield Fire Department personnel who were treating a 1-year-old suffering from burns caused by scalding water.

Police said the child was placed in a bathtub by the two babysitters, who turned the water on and left the child unattended.

The baby, who suffered third-degree burns from the waist-down, was taken to the Grossman Burn Center at San Joaquin Community Hospital before being transferred to the Fresno Burn Center.

Two other small children at the home were taken into protective custody, police said in the release.

The babysitters, Thomas Merritt, 23, and Lynesha Wells, 22, were arrested on suspicion of felony child abuse and felony child abuse causing great bodily injury.

Both remained behind bars Saturday, according to the Kern County Sheriff's Office website.

Anyone with information about this case is asked to call the Bakersfield Police Department at 327-7111.

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