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Infant hospitalized with fractured skull, police charge father

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Michael Andrew Taylor

ADAMS COUNTY, Pa. – An Adams County father is behind bars charged with fracturing his infant son’s skull.  Pennsylvania State Police arrested Michael Andrew Taylor, 25, of Gettysburg for causing serious bodily injury to his 11 month old son.

According to charging documents, PSP were summoned on November 3 at about 9 pm to Gettysburg Hospital to investigate a possible child abuse case.  When a State Trooper arrived on the scene the child was being prepared to be taken to Penn State Hershey Medical Center for treatment of injuries to his skull. The trooper also noticed the child’s forehead had a visible black and blue bruise.

A hospital nurse said that the child had been brought in by his parents, identified as Tasha Reidt and Michael Taylor. The nurse said that infant had vomited prior to admission and had a contusion on the back of head. An x-ray revealed the baby had a posterior fracture to the back of his skull.

The next day police interviewed Taylor at Gettysburg Hospital. He told police that he and his fianceeTasha Reidt and their son were over at their friend’s apartment in Bonneauville Borough.  He said that their son was playing on the floor with their friend’s children. He said the child saw a toy on the love seat and went to grab it causing him to fall backwards, striking his head.  Taylor said that he and his friend David Walling tried to catch the boy while he was falling but were unable to. He said the child screamed hysterically. After the infant calmed down, Taylor he decided to put the child to bed. He said he walked outside the apartment and as he closed the front door the baby slammed his head against his shoulder. He said he immediately went back inside and the baby went limp. Police also asked if he had ever spanked or slapped the child and Taylor said no.  When questioned again on November he admitted to spanking the baby because he was grabbing some electronic equipment but he denied leaving a bruise from the spanking.

On November 6, police interviewed Rachel Ann Long, Walling’s fiancee, who said that the child did not fall. During another interview on November 7, Reidt also said that the child had not fallen, but that Taylor took the child upstairs to their apartment and that he came back downstairs after about a minute and the baby was limb.  In another interview later in the day Reidt told police that Taylor had spanked the child on Sunday, September 27, leaving a black and blue bruise on the baby’s buttocks and testicles. She also said that she was afraid of Taylor and had threaten to kill her and slit her throat after she reported the spanking to Children and Youth Services.

In a followup interview with investigators on November 12 Reidt again stated that the child did not fall as Taylor described. She also said that Taylor never showed the baby any affection and did not like it when she gave the child any affection. She also said that Taylor had shown her a picture of the baby on October 7 with a bloody lip. After examining the  child’s medical records, police decided to charge Taylor.

Charges filed on Thursday, December 3 included multiple counts of Aggravated Assault on a Victim Less Than 13, and Endangering Welfare of Children.  Following arraignment, Taylor was sent the Adams County Prison in lieu of $1 million bail.