Cops: Sanford man hit baby until she seized, died

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SANFORD, Fla. —

About a month after a 21-month-old baby died from a head injury, authorities in Sanford arrested the child's babysitter and charged him with first-degree premeditated murder.

A medical examiner's report released on Wednesday determined the child was deliberately abused.

Police arrested Matthew McCague, who they said struck the child on purpose, causing severe bruising.

Last month, McCague called 911, saying the child was having seizures after falling. The little girl was flown to the Arnold Palmer Hospital for Children and later died.

"The bruising appeared to be intentional, abusive in nature. Not accidental," Trekelle Perkins of the Sanford Police Department said.

Channel 9 learned McCague was a family friend who was caring for the baby at the time of the injury.

"I can't figure out for the life of me, I don't know what a child would do to cause or make someone react in this manner," Perkins said.

The little girl's parents live in Marion County.

She was staying with a relative at the time of her death and that woman allowed the unemployed McCague to watch the child a few times, police said.

During an interrogation, police said he opened up about what he'd done and said he was remorseful about her death.

McCague is being held at the Seminole County Jail. He's due in court on Thursday.