'Horrific' child abuse lands Nashville parents in jail - WAFF-TV: News, Weather and Sports for Huntsville, AL

'Horrific' child abuse lands Nashville parents in jail

NASHVILLE, TN (WSMV) -

Two Nashville parents are in trouble with the law for a case of child abuse investigators call "horrific."

Their baby girl had several broken bones, and police say when the child would cry, her father would give her beer to keep her quiet.

Workers at Hallmark Inn on West Trinity Lane say they'd often see Megan Banks and her boyfriend, Deviest Patton, with their newborn.

The couple stayed in the east Nashville motel where Megan briefly worked as a housekeeper, and people there said they never noticed any signs of child abuse.

But detectives were alerted when the couple's 2-month-old, Arieanna, arrived at Vanderbilt Children's Hospital with a broken arm and back.

"I don't know what word would describe it other than 'horrific,'" said Metro police Capt. Gordon Howey.

Police say the father blamed his other children for causing the injuries, but detectives quickly determined Patton, himself, was responsible.

"When you talk about a child this small having broken bones, in particular a broken vertebrae, that is very severe child abuse," Howey said.

Metro police add that during their investigation they found the father would allegedly give the child beer to try and keep her from crying.

After months of investigating, the couple last week was indicted by a grand jury and arrested.

Patton is charged with aggravated child abuse and neglect, and Channel 4 News has learned he's been arrested more than 30 times before - mainly on drug charges.

Banks is charged with child neglect. Police arrested her after a car crash in which officers found two other small children in her car unrestrained.

Officials say the baby is now doing fine and is in custody of the Department of Children's Services, along with those two other children.

Copyright 2013 WSMV (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.

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