ARIZONA CITY, AZ — An Arizona City couple was arrested after their infant suffered two months of abuse.
The Pinal County Sheriff's Office reports that on December 12, deputies arrested 19-year-old Nikki Newton, and her boyfriend, 20-year-old Rustin Thorsby, for child abuse.
Court records show ongoing abuse of the young boy by the couple, including Thorsby hitting the child's head on a lamp, a metal armrest, and picking up the boy in an aggressive manner.
Doctors at Phoenix Children's Hospital determined the baby is suffering from a brain bleed and "severe retinal hemorrhaging," caused by multiple injuries. Medical professionals believe if medical attention had been provided earlier, the baby's injuries would have been reduced.
PCSO says they discovered multiple communication between Thorsby and Newton, in which they both showed disdain for the child.
In one message, Thorsby reportedly says to Newton, "I'm ready to drown this kid." In another incident, Thorsby describes the baby as not wearing a shirt and having a temperature of 95 degrees. He reportedly told her, "nothing is helping him, and he's turning blue." The child continued to cry when Thorsby sent another message saying, "If our kid has brain damage, it's your fault."
Deputies say Newton had multiple chances to call for help or return home and evaluate the child for herself, but she chose not to do either.
The baby is now in the custody of the Arizona Department of Child Safety.
Newton and Thorsby are both being held on $250,000 bonds for child abuse.
If you suspect a child is being abused, the Arizona Department of Child Services has resources available to report the issue to a social worker. You can call the Arizona Child Abuse Hotline at 1-888-SOS-CHILD (1-888-767-2445), and will be asked for information about the child, as well as the nature of your concerns. You can also get more information from DCS about reporting abuse or neglect online.