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Utah man arrested for allegedly tossing 8-month-old foster child onto bed, causing life-threatening injuries

Posted at 8:37 PM, Dec 18, 2022

UINTAH COUNTY, Utah — A foster dad was arrested Wednesday for abusing an 8-month-old baby, according to police, which caused life-threatening injuries to the child.

According to an arrest report out of Uintah County, the wife of 37-year-old Skyler Cox called 9-1-1 to report that the baby under their foster care was unresponsive and in cardiac arrest after being bathed. The foster parents began administering CPR, which paramedics continued once they arrived.

The baby was taken to Ashley Regional Medical Center in Vernal, where an emergency room physician told police about some "concerning" findings, the report states.

According to court documents, the doctor said there were "concerning neurological indications that could suggest [the infant] had been possibly abused, and the timeline given did not appear to match."

Results from a CT scan indicated that the child may have a brain bleed, according to police. As of Wednesday, arresting officers with the Uintah County Sheriff's Office said the child may be transported to a trauma hospital out of the area for advanced treatment of what they say are "life-threatening medical issues."

Police interviewed Cox, who said the baby had been sick leading up to the incident. He said the baby cries a lot, which was frustrating to him. After bathing the child on Wednesday, Cox said he shook the child out of frustration due to his crying and "tossed" him onto the bed, court documents state. He said after he tossed the baby onto the bed, he wasn't sure whether he had only landed on the bed or if he had possibly bounced and hit his head on the wall.

He told police that after tossing the baby onto the bed, he left the room and "only returned when he could no longer hear the baby making any noise which caused him to become concerned," police wrote in the report.

Cox said once he realized the baby was unresponsive, he took him into the shower to try and wake him up. After that was unsuccessful, he said he told his wife to call 9-1-1.

Cox was booked into jail Wednesday, and he faces a second-degree felony charge of aggravated child abuse. Court documents state that there are other children in Cox's home, and a judge has ordered him to be held without bail.

The Uintah County Sheriff's Office told FOX 13 News Sunday night that the victim was taken to a trauma hospital in the Wasatch Front area. He is reportedly still in critical condition, but stable, although "the outcome is still uncertain at this point," Chief Deputy Brian Fletcher said.