Robert Harford of Rockland, Maine is in Knox County Jail. He was arrested for the death of his infant daughter, nine week old, Ava Harford. On Sunday, August 17th, Ava was taken emergently to Maine Medical Center in Portland for her mortal injury. She passed away on Tuesday night. The infant’s autopsy revealed she had sustained multiple blunt-force trauma to her head. Investigators say that Mr. Harford admitted to throwing the baby to the floor. Another hearing is scheduled for October 29, 2008.
It is important to rule out intentional versus non-intentional injury in infants. The CDC statistics show that approximately 22 out of every 100,000 infants die from accidental causes. The version of events provided by parents or caregivers should accurately reflect the developmental level of the child and the type of injury sustained. The brain of an infant or child is very soft because it has more water content and it is easier to injure than an adult brain. Therefore, less energy is required to cause lethal injury to an infant or child’s brain. Despite the fact that mothers have demonstrated a more frequent tendency to abuse and are generally younger in age than male adult abusers; male adult abusers tend to inflict more severe abuse outcomes.