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Couple Charged for Causing Infant's Brain Injury

In January 2009, Tiffany Otten took her son to an emergency room at Parkview Hospital to be treated for symptoms that were indicative of "pinkeye".  However, it was later learned that her infant's eye was not swollen due to an infection, but rather his whole head had swelled due to a depressed skull fracture.

Otten (21) and her boyfriend Joshua B. Johnson (29) offered differing stories as to how the infant had sustained a brain injury to police when they were questioned.  The pair was later charged with a single count of neglect of a dependent as prosecutors say the couple had placed the baby in a situation that compromised his health.

Doctors say that when they examined the baby, they found two skull fractures along the right side of his head and the bleeding in his brain required them to operate.  In fact, an emergency room nurse said the bleeding was so bad that it had pushed the infant's brain to the other side of his head.

Otten initially told police that she was unsure how her baby suffered a child injury.  Then later, she said that he has fallen off of a bed a few days before she sought medical treatment. The story changed again as she told officers her 2 year old threw a toy at the infant's head.

Prosecutors countered in court that Otten and Johnson lived in a home that was full of prescription drug abuse and methadone abuse.  Investigators said the home was in complete disarray and also said that at one point, Otten admitted that Johnson mistreated her son. 

If your child sustained injuries due to another person's reckless actions, contact us to discuss your case with a Broward County personal injury attorney.