Brevard baby suffers 'severe' head, chest injuries; father arrested

Girl taken to Arnold Palmer Hospital in Orlando

By Eric Rogers of Florida Today

Andrew William Shelley, 21, of Cocoa.

COCOA, Fla. - Brevard County deputies arrested a man they said abused his 3-month-old daughter, leaving the infant in critical condition Tuesday with "severe" head and chest injuries.

Andrew William Shelley, 21, of Cocoa, faces four counts of aggravated child abuse and one count of child neglect with great bodily harm, News 6 partner Florida Today reported. He was being held Wednesday at the Brevard County Jail on no bond status.

Investigators were contacted Tuesday morning by the Florida Department of Children and Families about an infant hospitalized in critical condition.

The 3-month-old girl had been transferred to the Arnold Palmer Hospital for Children and Women in Orlando with "significant injuries to the head and chest area," deputies said. 

Medical personnel determined the injuries were caused by physical abuse.

An investigation found the girl had suffered the injuries while her mother was at work and she was in the care of her father.

The child remained in critical condition late Tuesday.

"Behind the bars of the Brevard County Jail is the only place suitable for someone like this, and I am extremely thankful for our agents who made sure that’s exactly where he is," Sheriff Wayne Ivey said on social media.

Deputies did not release details of how the girl sustained her injuries.

Shelley is slated for an initial appearance before a judge Wednesday afternoon.

Sheriff's officials asked anyone with information about the case to contact Agent Cynthia Young of the Special Victims Unit at 321-633-8419.

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