A 31-year-old Pennsylvania man already accused of nearly beating his girlfriend’s infant baby daughter to death in May was arrested last week for allegedly violating a no-contact order and again beating the child, leaving her in the intensive care unit.
Christopher Lee Lindsay Jr. was taken into custody on Thursday and charged with one count each of conspiracy to commit aggravated assault causing serious bodily injury with extreme indifference and conspiracy to endanger the welfare of a child, court records reviewed by Law&Crime show.
Kimberly Lander, Octavia’s mother and the suspect’s girlfriend, was also arrested and faces the same charges as Lindsay.
According to a press release from the Bloomsburg Police Department, Lindsay in May was arrested after then-3-month-old Octavia was hospitalized with a severe head injury.
Officers at approximately 8:03 a.m. on May 11, 2022 responded to a 911 call about an unconscious 3-month-old baby who was not breathing at a home located in the 700 block of Catherine Street, authorities said.
“Initial reports indicated the child was in a swing crying. The child was removed from the swing for a diaper change; and stopped crying, becoming unresponsive,” the department wrote in the initial release. “No obvious external injuries were observed by responding officers.”
Medics transported the child to the Geisinger Medical Center for treatment. Several hours after she was admitted, hospital administrators contacted Columbia County Children and Youth Services to report that Octavia’s injuries were “potentially the result of abuse.”
“Throughout the afternoon, additional information developed to suggest the child was suffering from abusive head trauma stemming from a sudden event,” the press release continued.
With the assistance of the Pennsylvania State Police, Bloomsburg PD detectives launched an investigation into Octavia’s injuries and charged Lindsay with one count each of aggravated assault, endangering the welfare of a child, and recklessly endangering another person. His bond was set at $100,000.
Lander appears to have started a GoFundMe page for her daughter’s hospital care in which she claimed that Octavia “was shaken” by her fiancé Lindsay, “who never appeared to be a monster until that day!”
According to a report from Scranton CBS affiliate WYOU, Octavia was in the hospital for over a month and was placed on a gastronomy tube (G-tube), which allows nutrients to be pumped directly into the stomach, because she was unable to ingest her food.
NorthcentralPA.com reported that Melissa Allard, who was working the check-in desk when Lander first brought Octavia into the hospital in May, was primarily responsible for Lander and Lindsay’s latest arrests.
The two women reportedly struck up a friendship and began seeing each other and speaking frequently. But after a few weeks, Allard reportedly began to suspect that Lander and Lindsay, who was released after posting bond, had gotten back together, in violation of the court’s order and his conditions for release. Lander, who was on parole for an unrelated incident, also allegedly asked Allard to lie to her parole officer and say the two had been together the last several days.
When Lander allegedly told Allard that she and Lindsay were planning on fleeing the state with Octavia, Allard allegedly came up with a scheme to get the baby out of harm’s way.
“Allard offered to rent the couple a car they could use to leave town and suggested they stay the night at a hotel near the car rental place,” the report stated. “Lander agreed and Allard booked the room. Then she contacted [Lander’s] parole officer, who called the local police to nab the couple.”
Octavia had reportedly sustained “new brain injuries” and showed “other indicators of neglect” since being released from the hospital. She was taken back to Geisinger Medical Center and admitted to the ICU.
The Bloomsburg Police Department did not immediately respond to messages from Law&Crime seeking additional details on the cases.
[images via Bloomsburg Police Department]
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