INDIANAPOLIS — An Indianapolis woman has been arrested and is accused of stabbing an infant inside a hotel in Castleton while attempting to stab a dog for eating her chicken sandwich.

The Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department responded to a report of a stabbing shortly before 11 p.m. Tuesday at the Days Inn in the 8300 block of Craig Street.

When officers arrived, IMPD said they found a 1-year-old girl stabbed in the neck.

A short time later, police found the suspect hiding out near a bush outside the hotel.

Police arrested the suspect, later identified as the girl’s 32-year-old aunt, Sharon Key, for criminal recklessness.

Booking photo for Sharon Key

According to police reports, the suspect tearfully confessed the stabbing took place by accident.

“I want her to be accountable for this,” said the victim’s grandfather Tracy Griffin. “My granddaughter will be scarred for the rest of her life.”

Griffin said his granddaughter, the stabbing victim, is expected to survive her injuries but was taken to Riley Children’s Hospital and got several stitches to her ear and neck.

After the stabbing, the child’s mother, who was also in the hotel room, quickly called 911.

The suspect, Key, told police that the family went to Burger King to pick up some food and then returned to the hotel.

Key claimed her pit bull ate her chicken sandwich, according to court records, so she got mad and chased the dog around the room with a knife.

When the dog jumped on the bed where the child was lying down, Key said she tried to stab the dog but missed and stabbed her niece by mistake.

“It’s stupid, and at the same time she’s a grown-up,” Griffin said. “She should have known that baby was sitting right there. I want the book thrown at her.”

Jail records show Key has been in and out of jail more than 20 times over the last decade.

Court records show she pleaded guilty to stabbing another woman with a box cutter during a fight at a gas station in 2020. She was released from the Department of Correction in March for that crime.

Key’s family members that we spoke with said she has struggled with drug and alcohol addiction and mental health issues for years. They added that they wish the city would assist those in need instead of simply cycling them in and out of jail.

“This city needs to do better,” said Griffin. “All they’re doing is slapping her on the wrist.”

Formal charges are still pending, but criminal recklessness is a low-level felony that carries a punishment of 6 months to 2.5 years behind bars.

Anyone with information on this incident is asked to call IMPD’s Child Abuse Office at (317) 327-3330 or (317) 262-TIPS to remain anonymous.