Man charged with abusing toddler

A Floyd County man was charged in Winchester with physical abuse after a 16-month-old girl had both eyes swollen shut and severe bruising around her head and neck.

Michael McKinney, 28, of McDowell, was arrested Friday by Winchester Police, four days after the child was first evaluated for possible injuries.

Winchester Police Capt. James Hall said the department was notified of the situation by social workers Friday after the child was taken to the University of Kentucky Medical Center.

Hall said the situation had developed during the week. The child was initially taken to the hospital April 1, but the bruises had not developed and there were no other physical injuries, Hall said.

After receiving additional information, social workers told the child’s mother to have the child re-evaluated, Hall said.

By this point, the bruises had developed around the child’s face, head and neck, and both eyes had swollen shut. The child was also missing some hair.

Hall said McKinney and the child’s mother were interviewed.

“They gave stories that were incompatible with each other,” Hall said. “Mr. McKinney, we believe, was in charge of the child when the injuries occurred.”

According to the arrest citation, McKinney told the mother the child had fallen. It also states he instructed the mother to tell the hospital staff that she saw the child fall and he was in the shower at the time.

Hall said doctors at UK determined the injuries were inconsistent with a fall.

“(McKinney’s) story didn’t hold water,” Hall said.

McKinney was arrested Friday and charged with first-degree criminal abuse.

Monday morning, McKinney was arraigned in Clark District Court where an automatic not-guilty plea was entered and a preliminary hearing was set for April 17.

He is being held in the Clark County Detention Center on a $25,000 cash bond.