Share This Page

Tot abused; man charged

| Wednesday, Nov. 13, 2013, 1:56 a.m.
Yeaples

A 2-year-old Kittanning girl nearly died from being repeatedly kicked and punched by a caretaker, state police said Tuesday.

State police charged Bryant Kimball Yeaples, 22, of Hill Avenue, West Kittanning, after being contacted Oct. 26 about a suspected child abuse victim in the emergency room at ACMH Hospital in East Franklin.

The injuries the girl suffered happened while she was in Yeaples' care between the night of Oct. 25 and the next morning, police said.

The girl's mother had left the girl and two other children with Yeaples at her Kittanning home while she was at work, police said. The girl is not Yeaples' biological child.

The mother told police that the girl was sluggish and unable to stand on her own when she woke up the morning of Oct. 26.

At ACMH, the girl was unresponsive and had multiple facial bruises, according to police. She was flown to Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh, where she was admitted to the pediatric intensive care unit.

There, a doctor said the girl's injuries included serious wounds to her liver, pancreas, kidneys, small intestine, stomach, and ribs, according to court documents. There was blood in her abdominal cavity, fluid in her lungs and air outside the lungs in her chest cavity.

She had also suffered multiple facial bruises, massive face and head swelling and bruising on her back and all extremities.

The doctor said the girl's injuries happened from “extraordinarily violent” action, including being repeatedly kicked and punched, and were inflicted by an adult.

State police questioned Yeaples that day. He claimed he had flicked her mouth with his fingers and put her in a corner after the girl bit his hand.

He claimed the girl had suffered “some type of seizure” the night of Oct. 25, but said she was breathing properly and did not seek medical care for her.

He claimed bruises on the girl's back were from him patting her, possibly too hard, and squeezing her stomach after she swallowed water during a bath a couple of days before. He said one of the other children had sat on her head, and that she had stopped breathing.

Yeaples allegedly told police he did not take the girl to the hospital because he got all of the water out and she seemed fine.

He also claimed to have performed the Heimlich maneuver on the girl about a week before after the girl had choked on four cigarette butts and was unable to breathe. He did not seek medical care for her after that incident, either.

However, the doctor at Children's Hospital said the stories did not explain the girl's injuries.

The doctor “stated that this case was a near-fatality and (the girl) would have died without medical intervention,” according to court documents.

Police charged Yeaples with aggravated and simple assault, endangering the welfare of children and recklessly endangering another person. He was arraigned before District Judge James Andring and placed in the Armstrong County Jail on $50,000 bond.

Brian C. Rittmeyer is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 724-226-4701 or brittmeyer@tribweb.com.

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.