Infant shows up at hospital with fracture, mother charged

Published 11:40 am Friday, January 31, 2020

CHINA GROVE — A China Grove mother is facing felony child abuse charges after authorities said doctors determined her 1-month-old had an arm fracture. The infant is being treated at Levine Children’s Hospital, said Rowan County Sheriff’s Office officials.

On Wednesday, Rowan Sheriff’s detectives assisted the Rowan County Department of Social Services with a report that an infant was being treated at the Charlotte hospital. The child had been referred to the hospital after the mother, 22-year-old Brittany Hardin, took the child to be seen by a pediatrician and they discovered a spiral fracture on the child’s arm, said Capt. John Sifford.

During the investigation, detectives determined the injuries on the child did not match what Hardin told the hospital staff. In addition to the fractured arm, two fractured ribs were also found on the child.

Hardin initially denied the abuse when questioned by detectives. She “claimed the injuries were the result of her rolling on top of the child’s arm while sleeping together on the couch,” a statement said.

Upon further questioning, Hardin confessed to squeezing the child on one instance and then jerking the child by the arm out of a crib on another, all because the infant was crying.

On Thursday, Hardin was arrested at her home, located in the 500 block of Sloop Street, and was charged with two counts of felony child abuse inflicting serious injury.

She has since been released from the Rowan County jail under a $25,000 secured bond. Sifford said detectives continue to work closely with Rowan DSS as well as physicians to ensure the child remains safe and to determine whether additional charges need to be filed.