Two Bloomington women were arrested Thursday after a 2-year-old girl that had been hospitalized with severe head injuries died at Riley Hospital for Children, police said.
The toddlers mother, Tameria Kline, 23, was charged with felony neglect of a dependent after police suspected child abuse in connection to the girls death.
Police said Klines girlfriend, Dominique Irby, 20, faced felony battery charges in connection to the girls death investigation.
"(Irby) stated that in the past she had actually beat the child on the buttocks with a belt that would cause welts," said Detective John Kovach. "She also admitted to tying the child's arms to her legs. She claimed that the child would pull her hair out, and that's why she would tie the arms to the legs."
Both women denied causing brain injury to the child, officials said.
A woman, who didn't want to be identified, let Kline, Irby and Kline's 2-year-old daughter stay with her in her apartment at Timber Ridge.
"I felt bad, I didn't want a child on the street. I gave them a place to stay," she said. "They were here maybe three nights... the child had a black eye; I asked why. They said she fell down some stairs on a skateboard."
The woman said she didn't see any signs of abuse.
"Never once in the three days did I see either woman yell at the child, beat the child. The child was quiet," she said.
Investigators said Irby admitted to placing the child in a dark bathroom with the door closed for time-outs.
The woman told RTV6 what led to the child's time out the day of the incident.
"The mother laid her down for a nap about 3:30. She'd gotten into an argument with her cousin about a cookie. The mom gave her a time out."
Police began investigating the incident after Kline called 911 when the child was having difficulty breathing, officials said.
The girl was first taken to IU Health Bloomington Hospital before being transported to Riley Hospital for Children in Indianapolis where she later died.
Hospital staff told police the girl had bruising that appeared to be from older injuries.
Kline and Irby were taken into custody at the Monroe County Jail.
Bloomington detectives said the childs death remains under investigation.
The Monroe County Prosecutors Office said more charges could be filed pending the outcome of the autopsy.
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