North Carolina mother accused of trying to squeeze 3-month-old to death

FAYETTEVILLE, North Carolina -- A North Carolina woman is charged with attempted murder after authorities say she tried to squeeze her 3-month-old baby to death.

The details behind the crime are gruesome.

"The mother actually took her fingers and pushed on the back of the child's skull," Fayetteville Police Sergeant Shawn Strepay said. "And, of course, at that age, your skull is not completely formed yet. And by doing so, she made the child's eyes bulge."

Officials said 31-year-old Amanda Hughes expressed "emotions of hatred, ill will, and spite" during the incident.

Police found out about the abuse in March when the Division of Social Services placed the baby in foster care. The infant was having seizures, and once doctors and police got involved, they found out the problems were tied to the mother.

"This was purposeful," Strepay said. "Most people, if you're doing those types of injuries to a child, there's more than just anger there."

The child is in the hospital now.

Hughes was charged with attempted first-degree murder, two counts of felony child abuse by intentional physical injury, and two counts of felony child abuse by neglect.

The child's grandmother, Mary Badley Hughes, was also charged with negligence. Police said she showed reckless disregard because she failed to take the child to get medical attention after she knew the child was injured.

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