DES MOINES, Iowa -- A Des Moines baby sitter was charged Tuesday with child endangerment after police said an infant in her care was critically hurt.
Melissa Watts, 34, was charged Tuesday. Police said she cared for 4-month-old Emiliano Ramirez.
Police said that on Sept. 15 Ramirez' grandma picked him up from the baby sitter and noticed medical problems.
"On the way home, she noticed the baby wasn't acting right," said Des Moines police Sgt. Lori Lavorato. "He was very pale, very cold."
The grandmother and parents took the infant to Blank Children's Hospital, Lavorato said.
"They had to drill into the baby's skull to relieve pressure on the brain," said Lavorato.
Police said doctors determined that Ramirez had suffered brain injuries. The infant underwent brain surgery and was released to his parents two weeks later.
Lavorato said the baby had no external marks or bruises. They brought the parents and Watts in for questioning.
Watts was arrested Tuesday and charged with child endangerment.
"This is a parent's worst nightmare," Lavorato said. "To take your child to the baby sitter and the child is OK and you believe your provider is giving you good care and actually cares about your child."
Watts is not a licensed child care provider, but Lavorato said she didn't need to be.
"She doesn't need to be licensed because the number of children is under the limit," Watts said.
Jennifer Morris, the baby's mother, said she initially had a hard time believing that Watts would hurt her child but now believes she did.
She said doctors told her they expect her son to make a full recovery.