Mother of shaken infant urges frustrated parents to just 'walk away'
Matt Gade, Deseret News
LAYTON — If you are frustrated with a crying baby, whether it's your child or someone else's, just walk away and cool down.
That's what the Layton mother of an 11-month-old girl who died this week of suspected shaken baby syndrome said Thursday, warning others not to let the same thing that happened to her daughter happen to other children.
"Shaken baby syndrome is not a joke and it needs not to be taken lightly. If you are upset or frustrated with your child, or left your child in the care of somebody, please set them down and walk away for five minutes, because a moment of frustration isn't worth the life of an innocent child," Jennifer Wild wrote in a prepared statement read Thursday by her uncle Chris Corbin.
"If you are really that upset, call a friend, family member or neighbor or anybody to help the situation because she would give anything in the world to have her baby back. Nothing can ever fix the pain or make it go away."
On Sept. 10, Tyler Ryan Geary was watching young Aliyah Faye Wild while the baby's mother, his girlfriend, was at work. Investigators believe he became frustrated with the child's crying and shook Aliyah and threw her onto a bed.
Aliyah was taken to Davis Hospital and Medical Center unresponsive and in critical condition, and she was transferred to Primary Children's Medical Center. She died a week later on Sept. 17.
Geary, 25, was originally arrested for investigation of child abuse. The Davis County Attorney's Office is expected to review the case and consider whether to file criminal charges against him.
Thursday, Corbin said his niece's death was "heartbreaking" for many people. He described Aliyah as a "very joyful little girl."
"She liked to play, smile a lot. Always good. I never remember any time she would cry or have fits or anything," he said.
Corbin said he has never met Geary but noted that Wild never saw any red flags or had any concerns about leaving her daughter alone with him.
"She didn't expect that to happen. She thought she was doing what was right," he said. "I wouldn't expect anybody to do it. You pick a little kid up, and you're four times the size of that infant. I couldn't imagine anyone doing that to any small child.
"You gotta walk away, set that child down. It doesn't need to happen. He could have prevented it," Corbin said.
Funeral services for the young girl will be held this weekend along with a candlelight vigil and the release of many balloons in memory of Aliyah. A fund has been set up at all America First Credit Union branches under Aliyah's name.
Contributing: Mike Anderson
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org, Twitter: DNewsCrimeTeam
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