ST. CLAIR COUNTY, IL (KTVI) - The Fourth of July holiday weekend took a devastating turn for one St. Clair County family. The father, 25 year-old Miguel Luna, is charged with endangering and abusing his young daughter. Investigators say he took her into a dangerously cold swimming pool and struck her.
St. Clair County Sheriff Rick Watson says it all started with too much liquor: “The man gets intoxicated. He takes his daughter into a pool, when it’s about 60 degrees outside, and somehow the daughter gets bruises and different marks on her, and while he had the child in the pool. So he takes the child back into the house, the mother sees it, and takes the child to the hospital.”
Because of the late night swim, the two year-old girl suffered from hypothermia, and Watson says the bruises on her face and body looked suspicious. “Some of them were marks like handprints,” he says.
At 4:30 Sunday morning, which happened to be the suspect’s 25th birthday, sheriff’s deputies were called to Memorial Hospital in Belleville to investigate.
Luna is now behind bars in the St. Clair County Jail, charged with aggravated battery and endangering a child.
Meanwhile, the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services is investigating the allegations of abuse. A department spokesperson says the little girl and her sister, who was born less than two weeks ago, are both staying with a relative.
The two year-old girl is expected to recover. Watson explains, “I don’t believe the injuries were anything that was life-threatening, but it’s not consistent with the way you would treat a human being, especially a small child.”