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Dad 'football kicked' tot, witnesses say

Published: Tuesday, Aug. 5 2008 12:12 a.m. MDT

PROVO — A father was arrested Sunday after witnesses told police he "football kicked" his 18-month-old child.

Police got a call that someone had witnessed a couple arguing in a Provo motel room Sunday with the door open, according to a probable cause affidavit filed in 4th District Court.

The man, 23, became so visibly upset that the witness said they saw him walk toward the door and "football kick" the child back into the room, according to the affidavit.

The witness said the child was thrown several feet back into the room and began screaming.

Police responded to the motel room and immediately noticed the child lying on the bed with a dark purple and blue bruise on the right side of her face, going from her temple to jawline, according to the affidavit.

When asked about the kick, the man first said he accidentally walked into the child, causing her to fall, according to the affidavit.

He later changed his story and told police he had been so angry that he "blacked out" and didn't remember what happened, according to the affidavit.

When police asked him if it was possible that he kicked his baby, he said yes.

The man's brother, who was also in the motel room, told police that just a few days ago he had watched his brother slap the child in the face because she wouldn't go to bed — the cause of the large bruise.

When talking with the child's mother, police said she seemed "inadequate to comprehend or intervene in the situation," according to the affidavit and kept defending her husband and calling the baby "clumsy," according to the affidavit.

The man was booked into the Utah County Jail for investigation of child abuse.

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