Fri, Dec. 06

Cottonwood couple accused <br>of child abuse<br><i>Police say it's among worst ever seen</i>

Michelle L. Marro

According to Cottonwood police Sgt. Jody Fanning, police were notified Aug. 13 after Marro's 19-month-old son arrived at the emergency room of Verde Valley Medical Center and was subsequently airlifted to St. Joseph's Hospital in Phoenix for treatment of an internal head injury.

Police were dispatched to the emergency room and contacted the attending physician who told officers that the child was suffering from bleeding and bruising on the upper left side of his brain and from severe deep tissue bruising to the face, chest and thigh areas.

According to police, the child's injuries appear to be consistent with those made by slapping and by knuckles of a hand.

The report states further that the bruising on the child's body appeared to be in varying stages of healing, ranging in color from deep purple to yellow-brown.

According to police, doctors reported they suspect the cause of the child's injuries is consistent with shaken baby syndrome.

Marro, the child's mother, alleges that her son is accident prone and frequently falls down, police say, but also report that the physician had reported that the child had previously been transported via helicopter to a hospital in Phoenix about two months ago for a similar injury.

Police report that Marro and her live-in boyfriend, Wolf, were under investigation by Child Protective Services for that incident.

Medical authorities at St. Joseph's Hospital said that after being examined by several doctors, the child was determined to have sustained internal injuries that are consistent with shaken baby syndrome, according to police.

The report states further, that because the injuries were in various stages of healing, it is suspected that there were several incidents of abuse and that the child's release was placed on hold as CPS has taken custody of the boy.

Police later arrived at the couples' residence, located on South 9th Street in Cottonwood and allegedly seized a pipe containing methamphetamine residue in Wolf's pocket.

According to police, both Marrow and Wolf were arrested and booked into the Yavapai County Detention Facility in Camp Verde, where Wolf faces an additional charge of alleged possession of drug paraphernalia.

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