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Dad Who Put Baby in Freezer Held on $1M Bail

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By Betty Wang, JD on June 03, 2013 12:46 PM

A young dad accused of putting his crying baby in a freezer and then falling asleep is being held on $1 million bail.

Tyler Deutsch, 25, of Roy, Washington, was apparently tired of hearing his 6-week-old daughter cry. So he put her in the freezer, and then took a nap. When the baby's 22-year-old mother returned and found her daughter in the freezer, it was an hour later. The infant's body temperature had dropped to 84 degrees, Seattle's KOMO-TV reports.

Deutsch then allegedly tried to stop the mother from calling 911, for fear of getting into trouble.

Deutsch's daughter is alive, but it's too soon to know if she'll suffer any health complications. Along with her low body temperature, the infant also had a broken arm, a broken leg, and a head injury, prosecutors say.

Deutsch is currently facing charges of child assault and criminal mistreatment and interfering with the reporting of domestic violence.

Child Abuse and Neglect

Child assault statutes vary by state, but in general most share the same definition for what abuse and neglect entails. Washington in particular defines it as injury, sexual abuse, sexual exploitation, negligent treatment or maltreatment of a child by any person under circumstances which indicate that the child's health, welfare, and safety is harmed.

The statute also lists exemptions to abuse, which includes physical discipline of a child as defined according to certain terms. This includes forms of restraint that are not dangerous to children.

Criminal Mistreatment

Criminal mistreatment is classified as a felony. In Washington state, the particular statute defines it as when a parent recklessly causes great bodily harm to a child by withholding any of their basic necessities. In this case, it should be very well known not only to all parents, but just anyone in general, that placing a child into a freezer is incredibly reckless.

Interfering With the Reporting of Domestic Violence

Domestic violence in general is defined as a number of crimes committed on your partner, spouse, or family member. The laws vary state by state, as well. In this case, the alleged interference was in Deutsch's attempt to prevent the mother from calling 911.

If Deutsch makes bail, he will be forbidden from contacting the baby or her mother. His trial date is set for July.

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