DELAWARE COUNTY, Ind. — The mother of a child who was nearly killed by a traumatic brain injury in March is facing charges.
The charges come one week after Hannah Hart’s now ex-boyfriend Andrew Scott was arrested in connection with the same case. He was arrested on April 6 for neglect of a dependent resulting in serious bodily injury. Now, Hart faces the same charge.
In this case, the Gaston Police Department responded to a home after an 18-month-old was unresponsive. The toddler was flown to Riley Hospital for Children in Indianapolis where he was rushed into surgery for a craniotomy.
An evaluation at the hospital determined the toddler had injuries that happened shortly before he became unconscious. He also suffered fractures to several vertebrae, which were classified as non-accidental. The injuries sustained by the toddler will likely require ongoing physical therapy, occupational therapy and speech therapy.
Court documents show the door was closed when Scott was in the room with the toddler, and there was no surveillance equipment or baby monitors. It’s unclear exactly what happened that led to his acute injuries.
The probable cause affidavit in Hart’s arrest says she moved in with Scott around January 23 after having known him for a very short time. Multiple people said the toddler didn’t like Scott.
While Hart told investigators that she confronted Scott multiple times about his aggressiveness with the toddler, the court document in her case alleges she dismissed injuries that he sustained since they moved in together.
In the court document, witnesses told investigators they pointed out bruises to the toddler on different occasions. The document alleges she dismissed them. The document also states she told investigators that he just fell down a lot.
During the same timeframe, the document states multiple people observed ruptured blood vessels in the toddler’s eye. One of the witnesses told investigators that they approached Hart about taking the toddler to the doctor for the injury, but she did not seek medical treatment. Another witness said Hart told them that the toddler cried so much that he ruptured a vessel in his eye.
The court document goes on to say since being born in August of 2020, Hart has missed or rescheduled 10 welfare child checks with the toddler’s pediatrician. The toddler had not been seen by a pediatrician since September 9 of 2021.
While living with Scott, the document states multiple people said Hart was not attentive to the toddler. They also said they heard Hart tell the toddler that she wished she never had kids.
Hart’s mother told investigators that she had been the primary caregiver for the toddler until Hart moved in with Scott. The court document states that the grandmother provided clothing, food, necessitates and a motherly influence to the toddler.
After Hart moved in with Scott, the document states there was a time where Hart denied the toddler’s grandmother from seeing him. A majority of the toddler’s belongings were still at the grandmother’s house.
The grandmother told investigators she noticed a negative change in the toddler and offered to keep him, but was declined by Hart. After the toddler was taken to Riley following the injury, the document quotes medical notes from the hospital showing the grandmother remained attentive to the toddler’s needs.
“Grandmother ( ▇▇▇ ) has been interacting with patient and is quick to come to the patient bedside when alarms go off,” the document quoted. “Mother (Hannah Hart) sat in chair on phone. Mother has not had any interactions with the patient and asks very little questions to the current patient care.”
Police searched Hart’s phone and the document states that while the toddler was at the hospital, Hart was allegedly taking nude photographs, leaving to go shopping, and buying a weed pen. The document also says Hart left the hospital for numerous consecutive days, during which the toddler needed medical treatment but she was not reachable to give consent.
The document concludes with while Hart said she was not comfortable with Scott watching the toddler, she failed to take any action to protect him. This failure to remove the toddler from Scott resulted in catastrophic injuries.