Crime

Mom fractured infant's skull, but it survived so she tried again later, NC police say

Amanda Frances Hughes and Alfie Dion Champagne.
Amanda Frances Hughes and Alfie Dion Champagne. Cumberland County Sheriff's Office

A Fayetteville woman is accused of trying to kill her baby and intentionally fracturing the child's skull twice, police said.

Amanda Frances Hughes, 31, of the 5000 block of Ashton Road, did not seek medical care for the child, according to police.

She was charged on May 7 with attempted first-degree murder and two counts each of felony child abuse by intentional physical injury and felony child abuse by neglect, according to Cumberland County records.

Hughes was jailed under a $250,000 bond.

The child's father, Alfie Dion Champagne, 48, was charged with two counts of child abuse by neglect for allegedly knowing about the injuries and failing to seek medical care for the baby, according to arrest warrants.

Champagne was placed under a $50,000 bond.

The child, who is now nearly 6 months old, was about 3 months old when Hughes allegedly first tried to kill him or her, according to The Fayetteville Observer.

In the first incident in March, Hughes allegedly squeezed the back of the baby's head between her thumb and middle finger and then squeezed the child's head as hard as she could, according to arrest warrants, resulting in fluid on the child's brain and a skull fracture.

In the second incident in April, Hughes allegedly fractured the child's skull a second time.

"Essentially (she) tried to kill the child," Sgt. Shawn Strepay, Fayetteville Police Department spokesman, told WRAL and the Observer. "She put her fingers on the back of his head, put a lot of pressure on that, and of course when you're young, your skull is not completely hardened yet, and it would actually make his eyes bulge ... She pushed inward until the baby’s eyes bulged out."

The injuries were first discovered on May 1 when the child started having seizures and Hughes took the baby to the emergency room at Cape Fear Valley Medical Center, Strepay said. Medical center staff then contacted police.

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