For state troopers who have been on the job for a while, there isn’t much they haven’t seen. From terrible road accidents due to drunk driving or severe weather, to gunshot wounds and stabbings, these tough members of the police force aren’t fazed by much.
But for the Idaho State Troopers who carried out a traffic stop on Interstate 90 in Shoshone County in December 2018, they just couldn’t recover from what they saw that day. This was because the injured person wasn’t a driver who’d been drinking or a car thief fleeing the law; it was an innocent 2-year-old.
When the troopers approached the vehicle, a minivan, they spoke with the driver, a woman. When, as per policy, they went to see if anyone else was in the car, they were in for a terrible shock.
There were two boys in the vehicle, an infant and a toddler, and the older of them was in such bad shape that it shook the troopers to the core. State Trooper Shane Grady was one of the troopers on duty and he simply couldn’t keep it together while describing the state of the young boy to KHQ in Spokane, Washington, whom Idaho State Police only identified as “Baby J.”
Repeatedly breaking down in tears, his voice faltering, Grady tried to convey to KHQ what he saw when he looked at the toddler. “He had bruises on his head, multiple lacerations on his stomach. His arms were stuck in a fetal position and his left eye was not functioning properly.”
“I’ve been to many fatal crashes […] went to a lot of domestic violence situations, I’ve seen people hurt, people injured, but I’ve never seen this before.”
This is heartbreaking, but worth a minute of your time as Trooper Shane Grady describes responding to the worst case of child abuse he’s ever seen.
Thankfully, because @ispdistrict1 stepped in, that child is expected to make a full recovery.
Story tonight on @KHQLocalNews pic.twitter.com/z4zlgVH6YD
— Adam Mayer (@KHQAdam) December 14, 2018
The troopers knew the little boy needed two things: first, to get away from the demonic adults who had been hurting him, and second, to get proper medical attention as soon as possible. Trooper Grady rode with the child to the hospital and on the way was shocked to see the boy’s heart rate spike and for him to begin crying uncontrollably.
When they arrived at Sacred Heart Children’s Hospital in Spokane, Baby J was taken to the ER, where he received the care he so badly needed. Thankfully, the doctors and nurses were able to stabilize him, though he had to remain in Intensive Care for four days.
In the meantime, the police had managed to arrest Jose Gonzalez-Vergel for possession of illegal drugs (meth, in this case) and having a firearm with him despite a prior felony conviction. While it was good to see the abuser brought to justice, even better was the fact that state care services managed to reunite Baby J with his little brother.
When Idaho State Troopers went back to Sacred Heart to visit the boy a few days after he made it out of the ICU, he was looking and feeling better. An excited tweet from the Idaho State Police said: “He was smiling and happy and TALKING!!!” The officers were so impressed with the little guy’s recovery. Baby J “brought the boys to tears,” according to ISP.
While the road ahead for Baby J and his little brother will surely be a difficult one, the timely intervention of Shane Grady and the State Troopers surely saved their lives.
Baby J Update- In late Dec Baby J was moved out of ICU to a rehab facility. Recently he has been reunited with his little brother and they are living together with a safe and happy family. He has made great progress. Thanks to all of you for your 🙏🏼 & donations. It meant a lot. pic.twitter.com/En9UfPrWKU
— Idaho State Police (@ispdistrict1) January 25, 2019