But as the 28-year-old from Bartow, Florida, was questioned, police discovered the real story was much more haunting than the story she gave.
At about 9:45 a.m. on Tuesday, police were called to the scene according to a press release from the Polk County Sheriff’s Department. According to a press release, when officers arrived on the scene — they began lifesaving measures on the infant. The baby girl was rushed to Winter Haven Hospital where she was pronounced dead just an hour later.
Angeles allegedly told police that a toddler who also lived in the house was responsible for the baby’s death — that is, at first.
When police discovered the infant, she had multiple bruises on her body, head as well as the face. Angeles informed police that the toddler pulled the infant off the changing table and onto the floor, causing fatal injuries. She was allegedly the only adult in the house at the time and police have yet to clarify the relationship is between Angeles and the two children.
Angeles maintained the story that the toddler had been “rough” with the baby and added how the 1-year-old had used toys to hit the infant in the face. But according to an autopsy report, the infant died from a fractured skull which caused a brain bleed and contusions on the outside of the brain.
Dr. Stephen Nelson, Polk County Medical Examiner, said the injuries could not have been caused by a 2-3 foot drop from the changing table to the carpet. Instead, the injuries were most likely from blunt force trauma. Other injuries were also discovered during the autopsy, including two healing rib fractures and a healing fracture on the infant’s left forearm. He went on to reveal how the three fractures were older and were caused by significant forces that were intentional and not accidental.
The infant’s death was ruled a homicide.
Police then interviewed Angeles again after the autopsy and her story changed. She informed police that she had pulled the infant from her car seat too forcefully and the baby’s arm got stuck in the seat belt. She then admitted that one time she got mad and squeezed the infant hard around her abdomen which was so painful it caused the baby to cry. She explained further, saying how both incidents occurred “over the last several weeks,” but still maintained that the toddler was the one to pull the infant off the changing table.
However, as the police continued to question her, she began to reveal the truth. Angeles later admitted how on the morning of the incident, she was changing the baby’s diaper and the baby wouldn’t stop crying. She said she thought of “how overwhelmed she is in life” and while the baby continued crying, she started to cry as well.
Shen then “lost it in a split second” and in a fit of rage, Angeles said she grabbed the baby by the shoulders and struck her head “hard” two times against the wood frame of the changing table.
After Angeles’s admission, she was booked into Polk County Jail where she is being held without bond. She has since been charged with two felonies: one count second-degree murder and two counts aggravated child abuse. In 2016, Angeles was arrested on charges of not having a valid driver’s license, and in 2019 she was arrested on charges of “battery domestic violence,” according to the press statement.
With a background in the creative and educational fields, Amelia Finefrock is freelance writer, singer-songwriter and nanny based in Chicago.