FRESNO (AP) — The physician who treated a 17-month old girl who died in a Fresno County babysitter’s care says the toddler’s severe brain injuries could not have been caused by a fall from a bed.
Dr. Samuel Lehman testified Thursday that Ella VanLeeuwen’s head injuries were comparable to being thrown from a car in a high-speed crash.
The babysitter, 22-year-old Megan Martzen of Reedley, faces charges of murder and assault on a child causing death in connection with Ella’s death in February 2009. Martzen told police that the young girl fell off a bed.
Martzen’s lawyer says the police investigation was “botched” and bruising from older injuries was not reported to the coroner. If convicted, Martzen faces 25 years to life in prison.