Cocoa Couple Charged With Attempted Murder and Child Abuse After Infant Suffers Multiple Fractures, Bruises
By Space Coast Daily // September 26, 2019
BREVARD COUNTY • COCOA, FLORIDA – Cocoa Police have charged a mother and father of a two-month-old infant with attempted murder and aggravated child abuse after the child sustained injuries that resulted in multiple fractures in the ribs, legs and skull, according to Cocoa Police.
Police have identified the couple as 26-year-old Stephanie Marie Hylard and 27-year-old Dexter Williams.
The investigation has revealed that police were first notified by the Rockledge Regional Medical Center after a child was admitted to the ER for broken ribs and seizures.
When police arrived, they discovered the infant had bleeding in the brain, along with multiple fractures to ribs, legs and skull.
Police say the infant also had visible bruises on her forehead.
“The investigation shows that both Williams and Hylard were responsible for the baby’s injuries and neither parent sought medical attention for at least five days,” said Yvonne Martinez of the Cocoa Police Department.
According to the witnesses in the report, Williams punched the child with a closed fist when she cried and described him as violently shaking her.
Police determined that both parents, Stephanie Marie Hylard and Dexter Williams, had a role in the abuse.
“Mr. Williams and Ms. Hylard knowingly and willfully abused the infant. They tried to hide the abuse by using makeup to cover the bruises,” said Detective Julio Gomez.
“Based on the severity of the injuries and the clearly visible nature, the parents should have known that this could have resulted in the infant’s death, yet they failed to seek medical attention. They had no sense of urgency.”
Police say each parent has two other children from previous relationships.
All the children are in the care of the Department of Children and Family Services.
Hylard and Williams are being held without bond and will face a judge at and initial appearance at the Brevard County Jail later today.
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