Florida man accused of tossing baby over fence

LONGWOOD, Fla. (WESH) —A local man is accused of tossing a 4-month-old baby over a fence and into brush on the other side.

The baby was found Thursday evening in Longwood with minor injuries. Richard Harris, 31, trembled and sobbed in court. He’s accused of aggravated child abuse.

A caller to 911 said she saw Harris in her apartment parking lot.

“I can, like, see him. And he’s completely naked, and I can’t see the baby, but he’s, like, screaming,” the caller told a 911 dispatcher.

The caller said one minute the man had on pants, carrying a crying baby, and the next thing she knew — no clothes, and no infant.

“He hasn’t said where the baby is, has he?” the dispatcher told the caller.

“No,” the caller replied.

Across the street, a clue was found in the yard of Michele Reaves. She told police there were pants in her yard.

“We heard him screaming,” Reaves said.

The baby was on the opposite side of Reaves’ privacy fence.

“I’ve never seen an officer clear a fence as quick as he did. I don’t know how he did it, but he was over the fence, had the baby and was back over the fence with the baby,” Reaves said.

“The baby had actually been thrown over the fence by the suspect,” said Corporal. Ryan Short of the Longwood Police Department.

The baby was rushed to the hospital for medical care and is expected to make a full recovery.

Reaves has seen Harris and the baby before and said she had never seen anything odd.

“Who does that? No one just does that,” Reaves said.

Police and Reaves suggested that Harris may have been under the influence of something that made him act strangely.

Harris’s attorney argued the case should not be aggravated child abuse because the baby wasn’t badly hurt.

The judge said Harris will be held without bond while that’s sorted out. Police said Harris resisted arrest and yelled random things. Harris said after a trip to the hospital, he doesn’t remember anything at all.

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