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Video reportedly captures mother slapping her baby

Aug. 1, 2012

A Wauwatosa mother faces four felony charges of child abuse with the intention to do harm, one count for each of the times she allegedly struck her 3-month-old daughter July 26.

Chancline Babcock, 19, was allegedly caught on video abusing her baby at 10:22 a.m. Now she is in jail, and the baby is in the father's care while the Child Welfare Bureau investigates.

According to a Wauwatosa Police Department report:

The father had been using a video camera to record the baby. At first, the video shown to police captured images of a happy little girl smiling and cooing. He let the camera continue to record while he stepped out for a minute to use the telephone in the downstairs apartment. Babcock, the father's girlfriend, was still in the home.

When he returned a few minutes later, he found the baby red-faced and screaming. He played back the video, which showed a woman's hand audibly slapping the baby across the face. The baby cried hard enough that she was having trouble breathing. The slaps continued, leading to even louder crying.

The father was so angry, he grabbed Babcock and threw her to the floor. Then he again went downstairs to make a phone call, this time to his aunt. He said he was fearful that his anger would lead him to harm his girlfriend and he needed a ride to take the baby to Children's Hospital.

When he returned upstairs, the front door and bedroom doors were allegedly locked. He kicked them in and found Babcock holding the baby. She didn't immediately turn over her daughter until the father threatened to stab her with a screwdriver. After she handed him the baby, he went outside to wait for his aunt.

When the aunt arrived, Babcock reportedly made suicidal statements, prompting the aunt to remove all the knives from the home. She also called 911 for a ride to the hospital.

When officers arrived at the home in the 1000 block of North 68th Street, Babcock was on the couch sobbing that her baby had been taken. She allegedly told police she had struck her daughter one time in the shoulder and three times in the face.

"You're going to think it's pretty bad," she allegedly said, adding that she had "snapped" and the baby's crying had made her angry.

A doctor at the hospital said the baby had a bruise or beginning of bruise behind her shoulder and a minor scrape on one knee.

Meanwhile, hospital social workers contacted with Milwaukee Bureau of Child Welfare to report the incident.

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