Thursday, April 3, 2003

Bellevue man pleads not guilty to hurting daughter

By Jim Hannah
The Cincinnati Enquirer

NEWPORT - A Bellevue man has been arrested on a charge that he abused his daughter, the second time he has faced a charge of harming an infant in his care.

David W. McKnight, 30, of Eden Avenue in Bellevue pleaded not guilty Wednesday in Campbell District Court to one count of first-degree criminal abuse. He was being held at the Campbell County jail Wednesday evening in lieu of a $100,000 bond.

Campbell police arrested McKnight on Monday afternoon. They said he made a statement that he had shaken 10-week-old Hailey McKnight the previous evening while her mother was at work, according to court records.

Hailey was listed in critical condition at Children's Hospital Medical Center. Hospital officials refused to provide details of the child's injuries, but law enforcement officials said Hailey suffered serious brain injuries consistent with those received by victims of shaken-baby syndrome.

The child's mom, Claudette Lake, told Campbell County police McKnight was watching their child while she worked. She had recently returned to her job as a convenience store clerk from maternity leave. Lake took Hailey to the emergency room after finding the child non-responsive early Monday.

In 1997, McKnight was sentenced to five years in jail after pleading guilty to second-degree criminal abuse in connection with fracturing the leg of a 1-year-old from Park Hills.


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