Man charged with aggravated child abuse
An infant is being kept alive by artificial respiration at All Children’s Hospital after suffering massive head trauma, broken bones, bruises and signs of strangulation while in the custody of a caretaker, officials said Monday.
Ryan Costello, 31, of 15790 Portofino Springs Boulevard, Unit #1801, Fort Myers, has been charged with one count each of aggravated child abuse, child neglect, manufacture of marijuana, possession of cocaine, possession of drug paraphernalia and two counts of misdemeanor battery after surrendering to authorities Sunday night, according to the Lee County Sheriff’s Office.
Deputies received the call about an infant dropped off at an emergency room with severe injuries at 2:17 a.m. Sunday. Deputies responding to Lee Memorial Health Park Hospital were told the little boy had been handed to a nurse by a male adult. The man then ran to a black SUV and left.
The child’s injuries required he be transport to All Children’s Hospital in St. Petersburg.
Detectives with the Sheriff’s Office Child Abuse Unit were assigned to investigate. They identified the man who dropped the infant off at the hospital as Costello. The infant had been in the care and custody of Costello, officials said.
According to the Lee County Sheriff’s Office, their investigation reveals the child’s mother returned home from a local bar around 2 a.m. A physical altercation occurred between the suspect, a friend and Costello outside the home. Once the friend left, the woman was knocked to the floor and beaten. She pretended to be unconscious and Costello retreated to a bedroom. As she got up from the living room floor, she noticed her son lying on a cushion, unresponsive and struggling to breathe. She immediately took the child and began to run to the hospital. Moments later, Costello pulled up in the SUV and drove the two to the emergency room, officials said.
Costello surrendered to detectives Sunday night. He was arrested and transported to the Lee County Jail.
Source: Lee County Sheriff’s Office