18-year-old Orange County dad charged in baby's death

By John W. Davis, Reporter
Last Updated: Wednesday, January 28, 2015, 9:17 AM EST

A 4-month-old infant is dead and her father is behind bars at the Orange County jail, facing charges related to her death.

Heriberto Montes Ramos, 18, was arrested Sunday for child neglect.

Investigators with the Orange County Sheriff’s Office said the incident took place on Monarch Drive off Conway Road near State Road 528.

According to the arrest report, the infant suffered a fractured skull, brain swelling and bruises above her eye. 

Montes Ramos was also charged with aggravated child abuse after his daughter, Mia Valentina Montes Balleste, died Tuesday at Arnold Palmer Children’s Hospital.

Hospital staff also reported the infant had two partially healed ribs.

In the arrest report, deputies said they met with the child’s mother, who said when she came home on Saturday, her daughter was not breathing. The child’s father was at home watching their daughter.

Montes Ramos told detectives he put the baby in a bouncy chair and sat the chair on a short table. When he turned around from picking up some toys nearby, the baby was on the floor unresponsive, because Montes Ramos said another child knocked the bouncy chair over.

Montes Ramos is being held at the Orange County Jail without bond. Homicide detectives have taken over the death investigation case.