RUSSIAVILLE, Ind. -- Police arrested a Frankfort man Tuesday accused of "scalping" his girlfriend's 3-year-old daughter.
Noel Maxwell told police she was home asleep February 23 when her boyfriend Andrew Milburn, 35, returned home from visiting his parents with her 3-year-old daughter, Lilian Grace.
Maxwell said upon checking on Lilian, she noticed "extensive swelling" to the side of her head.
Milburn reportedly said the girl "must have fallen from a chair at his parents' home."
Doctors at Riley Hospital for Children determined the 3-year-old's injuries were not consistent with a fall, but rather were a "scalping" injury – caused when the scalp is forcibly removed from the skull, causing internal bleeding.
Police said further investigation revealed Milburn had struck the child multiple times on the head, as well as forcibly pulling her hair.
Medical staff monitored Lilian for days to make sure she didn't lose too much blood. The head of Riley's Child Protection Program said the hospital sees less severe cases of scalping once or twice a year.
Maxwell said Lilian is still recovering from her injuries, and it tormented by nightmares.
A neighbor who knows the family said he was shocked by Milburn's arrest.
"I'm just totally shocked because I've known the family a long time and never would have dreamed," neighbor Boyd Kunkle said. "I guess you never know when that type of abuse could happen next door. I mean, his family's a good family, so it's hard to say what would make someone do that to a child."
Milburn was being held in the Howard County Jail on a $25,000 bond.
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