Thursday, January 21, 2010

Dad bound over on one count of intentionally inflicting serious physical injury on a child (Cedar City, Utah)

Dad ANDY ROY GORECKI was admittedly the only adult at home--with 5 children under 2 years of age. Then one of the 2-month-old twins began frothing and bleeding from the nose, and stopped breathing. Dad had a variety of explanations as to what happened (another child hit the baby with a toy? Pulleeze.)

But doctors say that violent shaking is the only probable explanation for the injuries. The baby now has severe neurological dysfunction, with just enough brain activity to sustain a pulse, but not enough pulse to maintain life. He is now hospitalized in long-term care, hooked to a ventilator and feeding tubes. Doctors fear the damage is permanent. What a god-awful existence....

Injured baby likely shaken
BY NUR KAUSAR • • January 21, 2010

CEDAR CITY - Following testimony from a physician that injuries sustained by a Cedar City infant would likely only occur by shaking the baby, Judge John Walton bound over the infant boy's father on one count of intentionally inflicting serious physical injury on a child, a second-degree felony.

"Reasonable inference is there because the doctor described that probably the only way to have those injuries is to shake the baby," Walton said before scheduling 25-year-old Andy Roy Gorecki's arraignment.

Defense attorney Jack Burns argued the state does not have enough evidence to prove the injuries were not an accident, as witnesses noted Gorecki was the only adult inside the home at 465 N. 800 West with five children all under 2 years old.

The victim's grandmother had stopped home for a quick errand, she said on the stand, when Gorecki told her the 2-month-old, one of twins, was frothing and bleeding from the nose.

"I said, 'God, I don't know what to do,' because he was white," she said of her grandson.

Finding the baby not breathing and without a pulse, the grandmother rushed him to the hospital and physicians revived him in the ER before flying him to Primary Children's in Salt Lake City.

Cedar City Police Det. Mike Bleak said the baby is under long-term care in a hospital in Bountiful.

"Doctors have told us there is enough brain activity to sustain a pulse but not enough of a pulse to sustain life," Bleak said when telling Iron County Attorney Scott Garrett that the baby was on a ventilator and had feeding tubes to keep him alive.

Also in his testimony, Bleak said Gorecki gave different scenarios for the incident during interviews, such as one of the other children hitting the victim with a toy, or his bassinet knocking into a wall, or Gorecki dropping him from his arms.

Burns asked Dr. Jeff Gardner, emergency room physician at Valley View Medical Center, who treated the infant when brought to the hospital Dec. 18, if any other actions could cause the internal brain damage described.

"From my experience, it's solely just from shaking a baby," Gardner said, adding the act had to be deliberate to have a back and forth motion that would cause the injury. "There has to be sudden directional change."

Gardner said the ER team also administered several stimuli but the infant did not respond, which could mean severe neurological dysfunction.

He added that in shaken baby cases, blood vessels can shear, causing collection of blood in an area of the brain where it shouldn't be.

"From the amount of blood we had seen on the scan, the damage could be permanent," Gardner said.

Gorecki is scheduled for arraignment to enter his plea on Feb. 2 at 1:30 p.m.