Sitter accused when baby is bruised, dehydrated

The baby had bruises all over his body and was dehydrated

A booking photo of Sean Middleton, 21, from the Portland Police.
A booking photo of Sean Middleton, 21, from the Portland Police.

PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — A man faces 9 felony charges after allegedly abusing a 10-month-old baby boy he was babysitting.

Sean Middleton, 21, was arrested after the child’s mother brought the baby to Randall Children’s Hospital, where court documents say doctors found “non-accidental injuries” on him. The baby had bruises all over his body including his genitals, a burn on his back, burned hair and scratches on his face. He was also dehydrated, had low-glucose that indicated he may not have been fed for days and tested positive for THC.

According to court documents, the mother asked Middleton to babysit on Oct. 13. She had known him for 2-3 months and thought she could trust him with her baby. She saw the boy again the following day and saw nothing wrong, but when she brought him home on Oct. 15, she and a friend noticed the injuries and called the Department of Human Services hotline.

Middleton initially denied abusing the baby, but later told investigators he was frustrated with the boy’s crying and dirty diaper. According to the affidavit, Middleton admitted to grabbing the boy, putting his hand over the boy’s mouth and wiping hard while changing his diaper. He also allegedly admitted that the burn on the boy came from a lighter and that he burned his hair for no reason.

Middleton is charged with 4 counts of first-degree criminal mistreatment, 5 counts third degree assault and one count harassment, a misdemeanor.

People who live in the SE Portland apartment building where the abuse allegedly happened were shocked to hear the details.

Terry Burton, who lives 2 doors down from Middleton, said she heard the baby crying as she walked down the hallway. She told KOIN 6 News it sounded like the baby was chocking, but she didn’t know what was going on.

“I should’ve went with my gut feeling. I should’ve knocked on the door and done something,” Burton said. “How can anybody do that to anybody, let alone a 10-month-old baby?”