Crime

Father’s live-in girlfriend charged with abuse after child found bruised in O’Fallon

William Berry - Fotolia

A 23-year-old O’Fallon woman is accused of abusing her live-in boyfriend’s child, who investigators say had been seriously bruised.

Kayla M. Kite was charged about a month after the St. Clair County Sheriff’s Department and Illinois Department of Family Services opened an investigation on July 20, a news release stated. The child was examined and officials found “large bruising on the child’s back side caused by apparent physical abuse.”

Kite’s boyfriend shares custody of the child, who is younger than 13, with the child’s mother. The child and siblings were removed from having contact with Kite, the release stated.

“The father and mother of the child were unaware of the injuries being inflicted by Kite while the child was present with her,” the release stated.

Kite was charged with one count of aggravated battery to a child, a Class 3 felony. She was in custody at the St. Clair County jail Friday afternoon on a $100,000 bail.

“Adults are given leeway to discipline and use some corporal punishment, but there is a line between discipline and child abuse. In this case that line certainly was crossed with bruising or multiple injuries being inflicted on a child over a period of time,” St. Clair County Sheriff Richard Watson wrote in the release.

A photo of Kite was not available Friday afternoon.

Dana Rieck: 618-239-2642, @ByDanaRieck
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