Taylor Bush allegedly admits to shaking her baby: Did it kill him?

Categories: Colorado Crimes

taylor bush mug shot 205x205.jpg
Big photo below.
We've all seen the public-service announcements that tell television viewers, "Never shake a baby." But while the delivery of this line may seem overwrought, the message is inarguable: Parents frustrated with a child may actually kill him or her by reacting in a way that may seem totally natural but can turn out to be fatal.

The child-abuse-resulting-in-death charge facing Taylor Bush is a case in point. It's unclear if shaking alone killed her three-month-old baby, but as the police report on view below demonstrates, it certainly didn't help.

At approximately 1:40 a.m. on March 6, according to the probable cause statement, Bush, age 22, called 911 and told the dispatcher that her son Jormel, who was born this past November 14, had stopped breathing.

Emergency personnel raced to the scene, at the 4600 block of Freeport Way, and transported Jormel to Children's Hospital, where a CAT scan revealed he had a skull fracture and bleeding in the brain due to what doctors referred to as "non-accidental trauma."

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The home on Freeport Way where the incident allegedly took place.
Efforts to keep Jormel alive were unsuccessful. He died at 5:22 p.m. on March 7, and the following day, an autopsy revealed even more injuries to the infant -- specifically a healing rib fracture and skull fracture.

At around that time, Bush was interviewed at Denver police headquarters. She told investigators that she had taken Jormel to Children's on March 5 for a mouth infection referred to in the PC statement as "thresh." Presumably, this is a reference to thrush, which, as noted on the BabyCenter website, tends to make it painful for even hungry babies to feed. The result can be a child who's inconsolable until the condition subsides.

What happened that night? Bush told officers that she was watching television and listening to music when she looked over at Jormel and noticed that he was no longer breathing. His lips had already turned blue. So she picked him up and shook him.

Bush insisted that she had taken this action in an attempt to revive Jormel, not kill him. But unsurprisingly, it didn't work, and neither, she said, did her attempts to perform CPR on him. Hence, the 911 call.

The investigator asked Bush if she could have shaken Jormel hard enough to cause the injuries that soon took his life. "Ms. Bush believed that she did," the report states. Soon thereafter, she mostly stopped talking.

Presumably, Bush had to say at least a few words today. She was scheduled to be formally advised of the charge against her -- one count of child abuse resulting in death -- during a court hearing earlier this morning. Her bond has been set at $100,000.

More reasons why one should never shake a baby. Look below to see a larger version of Bush's booking photo, followed by the aforementioned probable cause statement and an interactive graphic showing the area near where police feel the crime took place. If you have problems seeing the image, click "View Larger Map."

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Taylor Bush.

Taylor Bush Probable Cause Statement


View Larger Map

More from our Colorado Crimes archive: "Heather Jensen arrested in deaths of two children left in up to 145 degree heat."


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7 comments
SueLuttner
SueLuttner

My condolences to the extended families in this tragic case. The loss of an infant is always hard, but to compound it with these accusations magnifies the pain.

Count me among the people who think this unfortunate mother is likely innocent. The  police report specifies subdural bleeding of various ages and both fresh and healing fractures, but makes no mention of bruising, either new or old. This pattern is more consistent with some kind of underlying medical condition than with abuse. 

Difficult as it is to believe if you haven't seen it first hand, over-diagnosis of infant shaking injury is unsettlingly common. For the story of a family torn apart when their son's metabolic disorder was misdiagnosed as abuse, please see http://onsbs.com/prologue/

JeremyPraay
JeremyPraay

To me, she sounds innocent.  There have been a lot of things happening in the legal realm regarding alleged shaken baby cases.  Even the man who "discovered" the diagnosis is now fearful of how it is being used to convict the innocent. http://onsbs.com/2013/02/20/dr-norman-guthkelch-still-on-the-medical-frontier/


Also, Professor Deborah Tuerkheimer wrote a law review article calling SBS prosecutions "The Next Innocence Project".  http://lawreview.wustl.edu/in-print/the-next-innocence-project-shaken-baby-syndrome-and-the-criminal-courts/

I don't believe it's ever safe to violently shake a baby, but when they are unresponsive, the National Institutes of Health recommends a gentle shake, which is what it sounds like the woman did: http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/presentations/100216_1.htm

margaret.m.brown
margaret.m.brown

This is my neice, I'm so heart broken by this news.  I'll be praying for her.

margaret.m.brown
margaret.m.brown

This is my neice, I'm so heart broken by this news.  I'll be praying over this situation, the baby is with God now.  But her soul can still be saved, no one knows what really happened to her child but her and God.  Right now if there are any other praying warriors out there PLEASE, I implore you to help me pray for my neice's soul.  She needs your prayers Saints.

Juan_Leg
Juan_Leg

This is a jury I wouldn't mind being a part of for the makings of a good trial . Depending on her record, (if she has one), and who will be representing her, could make all the difference in her case . She's fortunate it's taking place in Denver and NOT Arapahoe county, where she'd most likely be bullied into a 12 - 24 yr sentence .

Keep us informed on this,  Mr. Roberts . Are you attending the hearings ?

margaret.m.brown
margaret.m.brown

This is my neice, I'm so heart broken by this news.  I'll be praying over this situation, the baby is with God now.  But her soul can still be saved, no one knows what really happened to her child but her and God.  Right now if there are any other praying warriors out there PLEASE, I implore you to help me pray for my neice's soul.  She needs your prayers Saints.

Juan_Leg
Juan_Leg

@margaret.m.brown  My most sincere condolences for both your loses . I'm an Atheist, and rely on myself and those I hold closest . I hate seeing anyone getting abused by our %100 BIAS, 'justice' system !

It's cases such as this one a 'Truth-Serum' would be most helpful . A step beyond the under-proven poly-graph test . Juries are wrong more so than you hear about . That's news MOST OFTEN NOT REPORTED !

I'm one of those guilty of hoping she's innocent . I'm foster raised and hate the thought of a birth parent killing their own child . Granted, it made me tough enough to survive being ran over by a train and continue w/ a challenged quality of living .. Nothing a cpl bongs & a hand full of pills can't relieve ...

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