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Youngtown father admits to breaking baby’s ribs

A Youngtown father admitted to police on Thursday that he had broken his baby’s ribs while trying to calm the child down, court documents show.

Benjamin Joseph Cooper was arrested after X-rays showed that his child was recovering from multiple broken ribs.

Cooper said that, on Oct. 12, he was watching the baby while his wife slept. The baby was crying, so Cooper attempted to swaddle the baby. While doing so, Cooper said he heard a popping sound and the baby stopped crying. He never told his wife what had happened.

The baby was originally admitted to the hospital to be treated for dehydration, failure to thrive and a bruise on his cheek. X-rays revealed three clear fractures and three more possible fractures.

Cooper admitted to causing the bruise on the baby’s head after dropping him, causing the baby’s head to strike the side of the crib.

Cooper tearfully apologized to police, saying he did not want to harm his baby but had been up for 24 hours due to work. The baby’s mother is the primary caretaker.

Cooper was booked into the Fourth Avenue Jail one one count of felony child abuse.