NLV mother arrested for allegedly scalding child
By Mary Manning
Published Tue, Jun 23, 2009 (1:38 p.m.)
Updated Tue, Jun 23, 2009 (4:38 p.m.)
North Las Vegas Police detectives today arrested a mother who burned her 18-month-old child by putting the girl’s hands in scalding water. The woman has had her three children taken into protective custody three times before this, records show.
In this latest case, the child, along with her two brothers have been in protective custody since June 4, when police went to an apartment at 8 E. Webb Ave., said Sgt. Tim Bedwell, a spokesman for the North Las Vegas Police Department.
The mother was suspected of causing the toddler’s injuries and the case was submitted to the Clark County District Attorney’s Office for review.
North Las Vegas Police detectives received an arrest warrant for 26-year-old Shantell Morris of North Las Vegas and arrested her today, Bedwell said.
Morris has been booked into the Clark County Detention Center on one count of child abuse and neglect with substantial bodily harm, a felony, detention center records said. The child will recover, authorities said.
“She’s going to have horrible scars,” Bedwell said of the injuries to the child’s hands, which were held under scalding water.
The child was taken to University Medical Center Pediatrics Emergency for treatment of the burns.
At the hospital, North Las Vegas Police detective Mark Hoyt interviewed Dr. John Reeves, who was first to treat the toddler, according to a criminal complaint. The mother had told the doctor she caught her daughter with her hands in the toilet. To clean the child’s hands, Shantell Morris said she held them under a sink water faucet, which took a long time to heat.
Morris told Hoyt that she had just recently gotten the children back from Child Protective Services. Her 2- and 5-year-old sons were in an upstairs bathtub at the time of the incident, but were not harmed, the complaint said.
Detectives went to Morris’ apartment and tested the water faucet in the upstairs bathroom. After 12 seconds the water measured 114 degrees, then the temperature reached 134.1 degrees in one minute.
Child Protective Services confirmed to the police that Morris had had three child abuse claims against her involving her children.
A man believed to be the father, but who said he was uncertain if he was the biological father, said the two boys had been under protective custody most of their lives.
All three children have been placed at Child Haven.