BALTIMORE - Baltimore Police say the mother of an eight month old baby girl pulled out a kitchen knife and repeatedly stabbed her infant in neck and head.
It happened during a visit this morning at the Baltimore City Department of Social Services, in the 3000 block of Biddle Street in East Baltimore.
There is no way to avoid what is most likely the visceral reaction to those first two lines as there was no way for passersby to avoid the spectacle.
"When I walked by I heard the employees saying that an eight month old baby got stabbed by her mother. The police were coming with the sirens and they were running, the medics came and that is when all the employees came out ...they were crying and stuff," said Nelly Taylor.
The baby was transported to Johns Hopkins and is expected to survive.
Police kept the mother behind, they say she too suffered minor injuries but was immediately put into police custody where they attempted to gain some insight, if any as to why she would attempt to murder her own infant.
"At some point during the visitation or during the encounter she became irate, at this point she still remains irate so we have a lot to get through. Detectives hope to get at least why this happened, but at this point we have the suspect, we have the mother," said Detective Donny Moses.
Employees from a state facility where an eight-month-old girl was stabbed say they've complained about lapses in security before.
The head of the union representing the social workers at the Biddle Street facility calls the security firm used by the state inadequate.
"This is not the first time we have brought this up to management. Just within the last couple weeks we brought this up to management that there are safety concerns," said Patrick Moran, the director of AFSCME Maryland.
And as disturbing as the stabbing of an eight-month-old girl is, Moran predicts that it unless more money can be directed to child services -- it could easily happen again. "With inadequate resources, inadequate revenues to staff these things and resource these places, unfortunately we're going to see horrific events like this occur," he said.
Police say charges are pending, but the first order of business is what they call an emergency mental evaluation of the mother; searching for answers to the unthinkable.
"I think that's crazy. That's crazy, I don't know. Why would someone want to hurt a child?" asked Taylor.
Baltimore police say they are waiting on the results of the mental evaluation of the mother before they formally charge her.