Clearwater man accused of child abuse

Clearwater, Florida -- A 32-year-old Clearwater man has been charged with aggravated child abuse in connection with injuries suffered by his 3-month-old son.

Joseph Bentley was arrested Monday night on the felony charge after an investigation by Clearwater Police detectives.

The child's injuries were not even addressed until the child's grandmother took him to a scheduled pediatric appointment. At that appointment, it was noticed the victim's head was swollen. The child suffered a bilateral skull fracture and two broken ribs earlier in the month, but Bentley did not seek medical treatment for him at that time.

Bentley admitted to detectives that he forcefully picked up the child and squeezed him hard around the rib area, then slammed him into his own shoulder.

He told police he had done it on three different occasions..

The child then was taken to All Children's Hospital in St. Petersburg, where he remains. Clearwater Police opened an investigation Monday into the child abuse.


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