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Baby's injury has parents, hospital pointing fingers

As a 3-month-old boy's broken leg heals, state child abuse investigators must decide who to blame for the injury _ if they can.

Doctors at Tampa General Hospital suspected abuse and called state investigators after discovering the boy's broken leg Monday _ a full day after admitting him to the hospital.

The boy's parents say hospital staff made a false accusation to hide their own negligence. Michelle and Farooq Quadri say a Tampa General nurse told them their son Isiah's leg became caught in a hospital crib.

"We're trying to determine how in fact that happened," said Tom Jones, a spokesman for the state Department of Children and Families. "We may never know."

Child abuse investigators took the boy and his 3-year-old brother into custody Monday. The next day, a judge ordered them returned to their parents because the conflicting stories left unclear how the younger boy's leg was broken.

Michelle Quadri said the child was admitted to Tampa General Sunday with a fever after she brought him and his 3-year-old brother to a nearby pediatric clinic for treatment. Two doctors examined him and found no problems with his legs.

The boy's parents took turns staying with him until Farooq Quadri left to pay an electric bill about 8 a.m. Monday, she said. When he returned about 10:30 a.m., the baby was sitting unattended in a swing and crying uncontrollably. Minutes later, doctors discovered the leg had been twisted until it broke and called investigators.

Tampa General officials would say only that they are cooperating with the investigations.

The boy was in fair condition Wednesday evening at St. Joseph's Hospital with his mother by his side.

Michelle Quadri said she and her husband moved the boy after the abuse accusation was filed. They also have hired a lawyer to do an investigation of their own.

"It has been a nightmare. I'm a good mother, and I love my children and my husband loves our children," she said.

"One of those nurses who took care of my son knows what happened. I want that hospital investigated. I want those nurses investigated."