BRANDON — A 20-year-old daycare worker is accused of shaking and severely injuring an infant in her care, according to the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office.
Sarah Danielle Loria was arrested Friday on two counts of aggravated child abuse. She was booked into the Orient Road Jail, where she was being held without bail.
The infant, who is under the age of six months, was not named by the Sheriff’s Office. The baby was under the “sole care and custody" of Loria on Dec. 18 at Shepard Day Care, 208 Terrace Drive, deputies said.
Later that day, the parents said the baby turned pale in color and started throwing up. They took their child to a pediatrician, who initially believed the baby had a stomach virus, deputies said.
Two days later, Loria was again caring for the baby when the child became unresponsive while at the daycare center, the Sheriff’s Office said. She contacted the child’s parents, who picked up the baby and drove the child to a hospital on Dec. 20.
There, a doctor determined that the infant was suffering from Shaken Baby Syndrome, deputies said. Aggressively shaking a young child can cause serious brain damage and other severe symptoms.
“To inflict pain on a defenseless baby is a despicable crime,” Hillsborough Sheriff Chad Chronister said in a statement. "If you’re in the care of a child and unable to manage the pressure or responsibility that comes with that role, I’m begging you to reach out to someone for help. Taking your frustrations out on a child is never acceptable.”