Fairbanks man charged with abusing infant daughter

Posted: Wednesday, March 13, 2002

FAIRBANKS (AP) -- A Fairbanks man was arrested Wednesday, accused of stuffing so much toilet paper down his infant daughter's throat that it had be surgically removed.

Kimo Petitt, 32, is charged with first-degree felony assault in connection with the Feb. 26 incident. Police said his arraignment was set for Wednesday afternoon. Until then, Petitt was being held without bail.

According to the criminal complaint, Petitt woke up his wife, Lynne Petitt, and told her the girl had something in her throat.

''She knew that Mr. Petitt had placed toilet paper in the 7-month-old girl's mouth,'' said police Detective Tara Tippett told the Fairbanks Daily News Miner.

The Petitts took the girl to the Tanana Valley Clinic, where a doctor gave the blue-faced infant oxygen and had her rushed to Fairbanks Memorial Hospital. The clinic doctor said Kimo Petitt told him the girl accidentally inhaled some of the toilet paper he was using to wipe mucus out of her mouth and that he was unable to extract it.

At the hospital, employees called police. The child's admitting physician told police that the tissue had been tightly packed and must have been deliberately inserted.

''The doctor did disagree with Mr. Petitt's explanation,'' Tippett said.

The girl recovered from surgery and was released on March 1. Tippett said the infant is the Petitts' only child. Both, however, have children from other relationships. One of those children lives in their home.

According to the criminal complaint, another infant daughter of Kimo Petitt died of unexplained causes, possibly Sudden Infant Death Syndrome, in Washington state while under his care. A third infant was removed from his custody in California after she suffered broken ribs.

Tippett said there were no criminal charged filed in the Washington incident, while charges against Petitt were dropped in the California case.

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