Kristopher Henderson: Minnesota dad beats 2-month-old daughter to death, blames it on cat
MANKATO, MINNESOTA: A father who allegedly fatally beat his two-month-old baby and blamed it on on the family cat is now facing murder and manslaughter charges. Kristopher Dale Arlando Henderson has been charged with one count each of second-degree murder without intent while committing a felony and first-degree manslaughter while committing malicious punishment of a child after his daughter died earlier in November.
The 39-year-old was initially facing a first-degree assault charge for viciously beating his infant daughter — Adaline — at his home in Mankato on September 23. A criminal complaint filed in October stated that the child was brought to a local hospital on the evening of the same day when the fatal injuries — broken legs, broken ribs and a brain bleed - were inflicted on her.
Since the infant’s condition was quite serious because of the severe injuries, she was reportedly shifted to Mayo Clinic in Rochester for better treatment. But Adaline couldn’t be saved and she died on November 3. Her mother Shelby Goodrich told investigators that on the morning of September 23, she left her baby at home after feeding her as she went for work. The toddler was in good health at the time. But later in the evening, at around 5 pm, she received a call from Henderson who said he found the family’s 19-pound cat “laying on” the child.
About an hour later, Goodrich reportedly returned home and found the infant’s eyes looked like they were “bulged out” from her head. She immediately called her mother for advice before taking the child to the emergency room, where they arrived at around seven in the evening.
After interviewing Goodrich, investigators spoke with Henderson too, who initially claimed to not know anything about Adaline’s injuries, court documents noted. He then claimed that the cat was responsible for his daughter’s condition. But the doctors treating the child said her injuries were consistent with “non-accidental trauma” and the cat cannot be held responsible for them.
Following constant interrogations, the accused confessed to the crime and said he might have been “a little rough” with his daughter while changing her diaper. In another interview on October 1, Henderson reportedly told cops he had “cradled the child face down in his arms and struck her back more forcefully than usual”. He also apparently claimed that “the alleged assault went on for five minutes and admitted he had hit the victim hard enough to break her ribs.”
Though the infant was declared dead on November 3 after she showed “little to no brain activity”, final autopsy results are yet to come. Meanwhile, Henderson has been held in the Blue Earth County Jail and his bond has been set at $1 million.
Goodrich paid tribute to her little one as she told DailyMail.com, “She was always a very happy baby. When she learned how to smile she would smile constantly and she was never fussy unless she wanted a bottle, diaper change or some cuddles. She and I would always have cuddle time from 9-11 everyday when I was on maternity leave and my days off. I couldn’t stop looking at her or being by her side when I was able. She was very observant, constantly trying to watch what things were going on around her. She was my world and now my world will forever be a darker place without her. She was loved so much in the short time she was with us and will continued to be.”