Police arrest Lufkin man for allegedly breaking baby's leg

Jimmy McClelland mug shot courtesy of Angelina County Jail.
Jimmy McClelland mug shot courtesy of Angelina County Jail.
Mahala Ellis mug shot courtesy of Angelina County Jail.
Mahala Ellis mug shot courtesy of Angelina County Jail.

LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) - Lufkin Police have arrested a Zavalla man in connection to a four-month-old's broken leg.

Jimmy Brent McClelland, 25, is charged with injury to a child, a second-degree felony.

According to an arrest warrant affidavit, police responded to Lufkin Memorial ER on Aug. 12 in reference to the baby with a broken leg. Police spoke with the mother of the child, Mahala Ellis, who said she was at work when she got a call from McClelland, who said the child was hurt.

A detective spoke to McClelland, who said he was rocking the child by placing the baby's feet against McClelland's chest and placing the baby's knees against his own stomach. McClelland told the detective he was frustrated with the baby and got too rough in the manner he was rocking him when he heard a popping sound, according to the affidavit.

CPS responded to the ER later and reported the baby had also suffered retinal hemorrhaging consistent with shaken baby syndrome.

According to the affidavit, McClelland said earlier that Ellis had left for work when the baby started to cry in his swing. McClelland said he picked the baby up by his leg with one hand, with the other hand under his head, according to the affidavit.

McClelland is not the father of the child but has been helping raise him since his birth, according to the affidavit.

According to Shari Pulliam with CPS, the local office is investigating a leg injury to a four-month-old Aug. 12. The baby is still being treated at Texas Children's Hospital. His long-term prognosis is not yet known. Pulliam would not confirm who was being criminally investigated in the case.

CPS has removed the baby from its guardian and placed him into foster care.

Ellis served a 30-day jail sentence in May after she pleaded guilty to hitting a disabled woman with her car and leaving the scene in June 2010.

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