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Man accused of killing baby/DOWNLOAD CHARGES

by CHAUNCEY ROSS chauncey@indianagazette.net on December 30, 2011 3:00 AM

BOLIVAR -- A former Indiana man has been jailed without bond in Greensburg, charged in the suspected beating death of his 20-day-old daughter.

Clayton Mibroda, 25, of Bolivar, was charged Thursday by state police at Indiana after Indiana County Coroner Michael Baker ruled Natalee Kay Mibroda's death Tuesday was a homicide.

The baby died at Indiana Regional Medical Center, where she had been taken for treatment of what her family members described as a single accidental injury.

An autopsy performed at the Allegheny County Medical Examiner's office showed that Natalee -- born Dec. 7 to Kayla Lichtenfels -- suffered multiple extensive injuries, including some that she may have suffered a day or more before she was taken to the hospital, Baker reported.

The autopsy showed the baby died of blunt force injuries to the head and chest, including multi-force head trauma, bleeding inside her skull, a hemorrhage of the optic nerves and retinas, a broken right clavicle, a bruised lung and injuries inside her mouth.

Mibroda was taken for a preliminary arraignment at 6:30 p.m. Thursday before District Judge Roger Eckels, of Mount Pleasant, the assigned night court judge, who denied bail and sent Mibroda to Westmoreland County Prison.

A preliminary hearing is tentatively scheduled for 10:30 a.m. Jan. 6 at the Ligonier district court.

Trooper Timothy Lipniskis, of Indiana, said he filed the charges after Mibroda gave three conflicting accounts of what happened to the baby.

On Tuesday afternoon at the hospital, Mibroda told investigators the infant was fine the previous night but had trouble when he fed her that morning.

While feeding from a bottle, the baby "began to spit up a little and her chest was caving in like something was blocking her airway," according to Mibroda's account. He told police he went into "panic mode" and patted the baby's back, then stuck his fingers in her throat to check for anything there, and began to perform CPR on the infant.

Mibroda told police Lichtenfels' grandmother came into the house, saw what was happening and went to a neighbor's house to phone 911. Meanwhile, Mibroda told police, he continued CPR until an ambulance arrived.

According to court papers, Mibroda told paramedics that Natalee had slept all night in a car seat but began to cry and became unresponsive when he removed her from the car seat to feed her.

And when Lipniskis called Mibroda to the state police station Thursday afternoon, Mibroda said Natalee had been sleeping next to him on a floor around noon Tuesday and that the baby began to cry and yell "causing a piercing sound," Lipniskis wrote in the criminal complaint.

Mibroda told Lipniskis that he picked up the baby and ran with her down the hall to a bedroom to get a feeding bottle and that he either tripped on a bucket sitting by the door or slipped on the wet floor.

"Mibroda related that he dropped the baby and accidentally kicked the baby in the head," court papers show.

Lichtenfels also told police that Natalee slept in the car seat Monday night, that Mibroda rose to feed her at 5 a.m., and that the baby was fine when she left the house at 10 a.m. Tuesday.

Court papers show Lichtenfels told Lipniskis that she returned home at noon and Mibroda wouldn't let her see the baby, so she went to her grandmother's house. Later, Mibroda arrived at Lichtenfels' grandmother's house and told them that the ambulance had taken Natalee to the hospital.

Lipniskis said he does not expect anyone else to be charged in the case.

Natalee Mibroda was born at Indiana Regional Medical Center, and was six weeks premature, according to the criminal complaint.

Lipniskis said the couple also has a 10-month-old baby boy, who now is in the custody of Mibroda's mother.

Mibroda has a record of eight criminal arrests between February 2006 and December 2008, including five that resulted in convictions in Indiana County Common Pleas Court.

He was sentenced by Judge Gregory Olson in January 2008 to serve four to 23 months in the Indiana County Jail and two years for probation for simple assault, an identical term for an unrelated count of making terroristic threats and a term of two years on probation for criminal mischief. Court records identified him as a resident of Water Street, Indiana.

In May 2008, Judge William Martin sentenced Mibroda to serve four to 12 months in jail followed by one year of probation for defiant trespass.

And in April 2009, Olson placed Mibroda, then a resident of Rochester Mills, on probation for two years for retail theft.

In 2006, he was placed on accelerated rehabilitative disposition as a first-time offender on charges of simple assault, disorderly conduct, terroristic threats and underage drinking. He was removed from ARD in November 2007 in the wake of an arrest for criminal mischief in June 2007 at a Britt Energies Inc. strip mine site in Center Township.

Mibroda's run-ins with police include a citation for harassment involving a security worker at the Sheetz convenience store, 768 Wayne Ave., Indiana in December 2008; a count of disorderly conduct filed in January 2008 stemming from a disturbance at Eat'n Park Restaurant, Oakland Avenue, White Township; a complaint for criminal trespass in December 2007 at the Conemaugh Power Plant in East Wheatfield Township; and a citation for underage drinking issued following a disturbance in July 2006 at Indiana Regional Medical Center.

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