Ohio man ruthlessly batters 8-month-old daughter, arrested after girl succumbs to injuries in hospital
YOUNGSTOWN, OHIO: A Cleveland man has been arrested and charged over the January death of his infant daughter.
Andres Garcia, 40, first came to the attention of authorities after they were called to the eight-month-old girl's home on Willow Court in Youngstown on January 17 over reports of an injured baby, according to WKBN. The child, Andrea Garcia, was rushed to St. Elizabeth's Hospital to be treated for her injuries but could not be saved despite the best efforts of emergency medical personnel and doctors.
An autopsy determined that the girl died of blunt force trauma, and earlier this week, a Mahoning County grand jury indicted Garcia for the murder of his daughter. Following the indictment, the 40-year-old was arrested at his sister's Cleveland home in the 2200 block of Forestdale Avenue the next day. If convicted, he faces life in prison.
Chief Of Detectives Capt. Brad Blackburn said it took this long for the case to be indicted because investigators were waiting for the autopsy report, which takes longer to complete whenever an infant is involved. "The death of a child is one of the highest priority cases that law enforcement agencies have to work, but dedicated police work by the Youngstown police department and swift communications across multiple counties led to the immediate arrest of this individual," said US Marshal Pete Elliott.
It is currently unclear when Garcia will be brought back to Youngstown from Cleveland. Marshals had first searched for him in Youngstown on Wednesday, March 13, and had notified their colleagues in Cleveland after learning he was holed up at his sister's home.
Garcia's arrest comes weeks after MEA WorldWide reported the arrest of Zachariah Wicker, 21, of Perry County in connection to child sexual abuse and child pornography involving an eight-month-old child in Morgan County, Ohio.
Morgan County Sheriff Douglas J McGrath revealed his office had conducted a weekend-long investigation which turned up evidence that implicated Wicker and helped them obtain a search warrant of his residence.
On Sunday, April 19, the Perry County Sheriff’s Office, National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC), and Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force (ICAC) joined the MCSO in executing the warrant at the 21-year-old's residence in the Rose Farm area of York Township.
The 21-year-old was subsequently charged with statutory rape and booked into Southeastern Ohio Regional Jail on a $1 million bond. If convicted, he faces to 11 years in prison, as well as a $20,000 fine. The sheriff expressed his gratitude to all those who had been involved in the case and had helped put a child predator behind bars.
"I would like to extend kudos to everyone involved in getting this case to a quick resolution," he said. "This includes Prosecutor Mark Howdyshell, Morgan County Children’s Services, and the Perry County Sheriff’s Office."
"I especially want to commend all of my deputies involved in this case," he continued. "My deputies put forth a lot of time and effort to ensure the victim is now safe. It deeply disturbs me to have such horrific crimes being committed in our community, but I am so glad we have a dedicated, caring team here at the Sheriff’s Office that was able to identify this crime, quickly act upon it and put an abrupt halt to it."