DELWARE COUNTY, Ind. (WANE) — The Fort Wayne woman accused of severely abusing a Muncie baby has been formally charged.
Amber Vannatter, 20, is charged with four counts of battery resulting in serious bodily injury to a person less than 14 years old and two counts of neglect of a dependent resulting in serious bodily injury. All six charges are Level 3 felonies, each carrying up to 16 years in prison. Vannatter is also facing a Class B Misdemeanor for giving false information.
The investigation started on Aug. 14, when police were called to Ball Memorial Hospital on a report of possible child abuse. A detective spoke with the child’s mother, who said Vannatter had been caring for the child at her home in Muncie while she went to work.
When Vannatter dropped the child off at the mother’s place of work that day, the child was reportedly bleeding from the mouth and was found to have multiple large abrasions on her face, torso, and legs.
Court documents alleged Vannatter confessed to burning the baby she was watching with a lighter and then holding her face against a running treadmill. She allegedly also told police she had gotten into an argument with her ex-boyfriend and was feeling depressed.
Medical staff said the young girl would likely have scarring from her injuries.
Vannatter is currently being held in the Delaware County jail. Her initial hearing is Thursday, Aug. 27.