Sunday, May 20, 2018
Public safety

Pasco baby severely burned by mother dies in Tampa

TAMPA — A 2-month-old baby boy whose mother held him under scalding water until his skin started to peel off has died, officials said.

Authorities called the injuries caused to Emilio Jesus Bautista, born Feb. 20, "one of the most horrific child abuse cases we've seen in years."

Pasco County deputies arrested the baby's mother, 18-year-old Chekayla Ariel Dampier of Port Richey, April 17 on a charge of aggravated child abuse causing great bodily harm after she took the infant to Morton Plant North Bay Hospital several hours after she'd injured him.

His burns were so severe — officials said a nipple was torn from his chest when his shirt was removed — that he was flown to Tampa General Hospital.

He died there Saturday, Pasco Sheriff's spokesman Kevin Doll confirmed.

"The case remains under investigation," Doll said.

Officials said Dampier confessed to placing her son underneath the scalding water because he wouldn't stop crying.

Family and friends of the teen said she was a single mother with a history of problems.

She remained at the Pasco jail on Saturday in lieu of $150,000 bail.

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