1-year-old child injured while in police custody in Florida
PENSACOLA, Fla. (WEAR) - A police department in Florida says it launched an internal affairs investigation after parents say a child was hurt while in police custody.
WARNING: Photo of injuries may be disturbing.
Pensacola police SWAT officers executed a search warrant Thursday morning at a home. Corey Marioneaux Jr., 24, has been charged for shooting at one of the officers after they rammed his door.
Marioneaux Jr.’s two young children, ages 1 and 3, were inside the home at the time. The family argues Marioneaux Jr. shot at the officers because he feared they were intruders.
Moiya Dixon, the chilren’s mother, spoke Wednesday.
“I was woken up by a phone call,” said Dixon, who co-parents with Marioneaux Jr.
At 5 a.m. local time Thursday, the children, Caion and Cylen, were asleep with their dad at the home. Dixon says she was asleep at her own home.
Receiving the alarming phone call, family told her what they knew. Among the info relayed was that her 1-year-old was injured.
“I get out my car like, ‘Where’s my baby? Where’s my baby?’” Dixon said. “And I get my baby and I see his face - and it’s almost unrecognizable compared to how he looked when I left him last.”
A picture shows the 1-year-old’s nose and lip swollen, a scrape on his lip, scratches on his nose and several bumps on his forehead. Dixon’s first thought: “Who did this?”
On Monday, the Pensacola Police Department gave a statement on the child’s injuries.
The department claims both kids were in the backseat of a car with an investigator. The investigator got out of the car, and upon returning didn’t notice the child leaning on the door.
When the investigator opened it, police say the child fell out of the car.
“The child was checked by EMS for injuries. Both children were later released to family members,” Pensacola police said in its statement.
EMS was called out for a hemorrhage and laceration on a toddler, and they arrived six minutes later.
An Escambia County official said they could not specify what EMS saw and said, but it claims the call was canceled 20 minutes later.
The toddler was not taken to the hospital by EMS, so Dixon took him herself. Dozens of pages of paperwork from the hospital document the child’s injuries after CAT scans and X-rays.
Dixon claims the Florida Department of Children and Families is investigating, but the agency has not yet confirmed.
The police department said it could not answer questions because it has launched the internal investigation.
Police Chief Eric Randall met with Dixon in-person right after the interview and “had a conversation with her,” according to police. Dixon says he apologized and promised to investigate what happened.
“It’s been very disturbing and overwhelming not knowing the truth of what happened to my 1-year-old,” Dixon said.
“My 3-year-old is traumatized,” she added. “He keeps having to tell the story of what his 3-year-old brain can comprehend of what happened to his baby brother. That is horrifying.”
Marioneaux Jr. declined to speak on camera. He faces a charge of attempted murder of a law enforcement officer, which he lost his job over.
“On top of all of his charges, he has to also think, ‘Now somebody hurt my baby,’” Dixon said.
Marioneaux Jr. doesn’t have a criminal record. Police say he is not a suspect in the January shooting investigation that led them to his home.
Dixon says she has no idea why police would want information from his home.
The family now simply wants answers to what led police to the house and how did their baby end up injured in police custody
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