Woman Accused of Severely Burning Toddler’s Feet With Scalding Water After ‘Having a Bad Day’

By Jack Phillips
Jack Phillips
Jack Phillips
Senior Reporter
Jack Phillips is a reporter at The Epoch Times based in New York.
August 21, 2019 Updated: August 21, 2019

Warning: Graphic photo at bottom of article and descriptions.

A Tennessee woman allegedly dipped a 2-year-old toddler, her step-granddaughter, into a pot of boiling water, leaving severe blisters and injuries.

Kaylee Robinson, 2, suffered severe red burns and yellow blisters from her ankles to her toes, according to graphic photos posted by the Daily Mail on Aug. 20. The alleged incident occurred on Aug. 11.

The toddler’s mother, Brittany Smith, told Newschannel9 that the suspect, Jennifer Vaughn, admitted to harming the child with scalding water because she was “having a bad day.”

“It just looked like her skin was just melting off,” Smith said, adding that the damage was so bad that skin grafts may not work.

Rocky Potter, a detective with the Rhea County Sheriff’s Department, told the local broadcaster that he was horrified.

“When I saw them [the burn pictures] it was just, it was the worst scald burns I’d ever seen,” Potter said.

Potter said that the hospital described the burns as accidental, according to the station.

“This ranks right up there with one of the worst ones I have seen,” he also said, adding that investigators determined Vaughn used scalding water to punish the toddler.

“It’s not right,” Smith said, adding that she isn’t sure when her girl will be able to walk again.

She said, “There is nothing in this world that a 2-year-old can do, no matter how bad they lashed out at you.”

A GoFundMe was set up to help with the child’s medical costs.

Smith told UK news outlet Metro that her daughter’s wounds are worsening more than a week later.

“It’s terrible, it’s just so stressful. Kaylee has had two operations so far, but they haven’t worked. The skin is not really repairing itself in the way the doctors hoped it would. She’s in a lot of pain,” the mom said. “They [surgeons] are going to take some skin from her thigh next week to try and repair her feet.”

Kaylee, she also remarked, “is at high risk of infection and could end up losing her feet.”

Other details about the incident are not clear.

Facts About Crime in the United States

Violent crime in the United States has fallen sharply over the past 25 years, according to both the FBI’s Uniform Crime Reports (UCR) and the Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS) National Crime Victimization Survey (NCVS).

The rate of violent crimes fell by 49 percent between 1993 and 2017, according to the FBI’s UCR, which only reflects crimes reported to the police.

The violent crime rate dropped by 74 percent between 1993 and 2017, according to the BJS’s NCVS, which takes into account both crimes that have been reported to the police and those that have not.

The FBI recently released preliminary data for 2018. According to the Preliminary Semiannual Uniform Crime Report, January to June 2018, violent crime rates in the United States dropped by 4.3 percent compared to the same six-month period in 2017.

While the overall rate of violent crime has seen a steady downward drop since its peak in the 1990s, there have been several upticks that bucked the trend. Between 2014 and 2016, the murder rate increased by more than 20 percent, to 5.4 per 100,000 residents, from 4.4, according to an Epoch Times analysis of FBI data. The last two-year period that the rate soared so quickly was between 1966 and 1968.

Jack Phillips
Jack Phillips
Senior Reporter
Jack Phillips is a reporter at The Epoch Times based in New York.