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Carthage infant recovering from fractured skull; father jailed on $50,000 bail

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FOWLER — A Carthage man is accused of fracturing his 4-week-old son’s skull.

State police arrested Matthew G. Monnat, 21, of 10636 Route 126, and charged him with reckless assault of a child causing a brain injury, a felony, and endangering the welfare of a child, a misdemeanor.

Mason Monnat is being treated at Fletcher Allen Health Care in Burlington, Vt., after initially being taken to Canton-Potsdam Hospital, Potsdam. The Vermont hospital would not release information about the infant’s condition.

“Often, when a child is under the age of 18 or we don’t get permission from the parents, we don’t release information on the patient,” spokesman Milner E. “Mike” E. Noble said.

State police Bureau of Criminal Investigation Senior Investigator Timothy J. Peets said he was told by the mother that the baby is recovering and there is no anticipation of long-term damage.

Mr. Monnat told Canton-Potsdam Hospital officials that he had accidentally dropped the baby at the child’s mother’s home at 18 Limekiln Road, Richville, late Friday, Mr. Peets said. Hospital staff suspected the baby was a victim of abuse and contacted police early Saturday.

The baby had a fractured skull and his head was swollen, police said. He was transferred to Fletcher Allen on Saturday.

“He recklessly caused serious physical injury to his 4-week-old son,” Mr. Peets said. “After interviewing Mr. Monnat, we found his story to be unbelievable. I can’t imagine I am going to pick up something as precious as a 4-week-old baby and not be sure he is protected.”

Mr. Monnat was arraigned in Fowler Town Court following a police interview Sunday. He was taken to St. Lawrence County jail, Canton, in lieu of $50,000 cash bail or $100,000 bond and is scheduled to return to that court Nov. 15.

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