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Police and fire

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Tool flung in feud badly hurts girl, 4

– A Fort Wayne man is accused of throwing a wrench that hit a 4-year-old girl in the head, causing her to lose an egg-size portion of her brain.

Jeremiah D. Jones, 34, was charged Thursday with two felonies: battery resulting in serious bodily injury and criminal recklessness.

According to court papers, Jones and his father got into a “very heated” argument the afternoon of Feb. 13. Jones told city police the dispute started because his father accused him of misplacing his father’s tools.

During the argument, the father’s wife and her 4-year-old granddaughter got between the two men to separate them. The father had started to walk away from Jones, when he heard his wife say, “Jeremy, no,” court papers said.

As the father turned to look, Jones threw a Channellock adjustable wrench at him. The tool missed its mark and struck the 4-year-old in the head, court papers said.

At 2:25 p.m. that day, 911 dispatchers received a call about an unknown problem, and police officers were sent to a home in the 1000 block of West Dupont Road.

The father and his daughter, the girl’s mother, took the girl to Dupont Hospital on their own. The girl received treatment there before she was taken by ambulance to Lutheran Hospital for surgery.

The girl, who was not named in court papers, had suffered a 2-inch-by-2-inch skull fracture. The injury caused one of her lungs to collapse, and she was put on a ventilator.

During surgery, titanium mesh was placed over the hole in her skull. She was then induced into a coma for a week and is now missing a part of her brain the size of an egg, according to court papers.

In an interview with police, Jones acknowledged that he meant to hit his father with the wrench but ended up striking the girl instead, court papers stated.

The relationship between Jones and girl was not specified in court records.

Jones, whose last known address was in the 1000 block of West Dupont Road, has not yet been arrested.

aingersoll@jg.net

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