An Illinois day care worker has been arrested for allegedly shaking a 7-week-old baby to death because the infant wouldn’t stop crying — and then waiting more than three hours to call for help.
Taylor Burris, 24, from Forsyth, was looking up “shaken baby syndrome” on Google as the victim, identified as Maren Gallagher, was dying in the hospital from blunt force trauma to the head last month, according to a police report.
Burris initially lied to investigators that the infant became ill after being hit by a softball while in her care, but cops said she ultimately confessed to shaking Maren because she was frustrated with her crying, reported the Herald & Review, citing a sworn affidavit.
On Tuesday, nearly a month after the baby’s death, Burris was jailed on charges of causing aggravated battery to a child resulting in death, involuntary manslaughter and endangering the life and health of a child.
Burris had been looking after the baby at her home day care in the 100 block of Valerian Drive in Forsyth when at around 2 p.m. May 17 she called 911 to report an unresponsive child.
Paramedics who responded transported baby Maren to St John’s Hospital, where she was pronounced dead the following morning.
An autopsy found that the child’s injuries were consistent with blunt force injury to the head, according to Sangamon County Coroner Jim Allmon.
During her initial interview with the police, Burr claimed that Maren started crying after a ball hit her, and then became increasingly ill, prompting her to call 911 for help.
During a second interview Tuesday, however, Burr changed her story, saying that while Maren had indeed been struck by the ball, her injuries were caused by the caretaker shaking the baby.
According to the report, the incident took place at around 10:40 a.m., but Burris did not summon help until 2:05 p.m.
“Taylor admitted that she had ‘Googled’ information about ‘shaken baby syndrome’ the evening that Maren was in the hospital and lay dying,” Sgt. Roger Pope, with the Macon County Sheriff’s Office, wrote in the arrest affidavit.
Burris remained Friday at the Macon County jail on $250,000 bail. Her next court date is July 15.