Man accused of harming infant says he just didn't know his own 'strength'

Reported by Lisa Rantala email | bio
Posted by Kate Oatis email

TOLEDO (WTOL) - A Toledo stepfather pleaded not guilty in court on Tuesday to physically abusing the 5-week-old baby of his wife.

Twenty-four-year-old Alex Schneider became a father after marrying a teenager with a 5-week-old daughter. Now, he's under a $200,000 bond for having harmed the child when she was in his care.

In July, Schneider's wife took her baby to the hospital because the baby was throwing up.

According to the police report, Schneider knew he was squeezing the baby too hard when he was changing her; he believes that is when he broke the baby's leg. When burping the baby, he said out of frustration, he struck her harder than he should have -- on the back. He also admitted to breaking the baby's wrist when trying to wrap her in a blanket.

He said it was all an accident, that it happened because he didn't know his own strength.

Regardless of Schneider's line of reasoning, Dean Sparks from Children Services says you shouldn't leave your children with people you're not sure you can trust.

He also has advice for overwrought caretakers, including parents.

"When worse comes to worse and you feel like you're going to lose it, put the baby in the bed and walk out of the room," Sparks advises.