SPRING HILL — A 26-year-old woman told investigators she beat, neglected and starved a 2-year-old girl because she was frustrated that she was out of marijuana.
Ashley Collier of 17351 Citrus Lane in Kent Grove was arrested Thursday and charged with child abuse with aggravated battery causing permanent disability.
The toddler was brought to Spring Hill Regional Hospital on Wednesday and "had injuries indicative of extensive physical abuse and gross neglect; specifically a fractured left tibia, multiple areas of bruising and swelling about the head and face, cracking on lips and blistering on tongue," which are signs of dehydration and malnutrition, according to a Pasco County Sheriff's Office report.
The girl was transported to All Children's Hospital in St. Petersburg for treatment. Her updated condition was not available Friday.
At first, Collier said all of the injuries occurred because the "child fell as she was walking down a small staircase," the report said.
After being questioned, Collier "admitted to striking the child on the head multiple times and pushing the child off the aforementioned staircase," the report said. "The defendant stated these instances were carried out in frustration over not having any marijuana."
Because of the nature of the allegations, authorities did not identify the child or her relationship to Collier.
Collier, who is serving a 12-month misdemeanor probation sentence for petty theft, was being held at the Pasco jail in lieu of $150,000 bail.
When questioned by investigators, the report said, Collier "became visibly upset and said the injuries to the victim were her fault."