Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Star Prairie Man Charged with Second Degree Reckless Homicide

On December 2 at approximately 10:38 p.m. St. Croix County Sheriff's Deputies were contacted by Children's Hospital in St. Paul regarding a possible child abuse victim. Initial information obtained was that the child, London Sherwood, 13 weeks old, had a serious head injury, eye bleeding and a possible rib fracture.

An investigation revealed that the New Richmond ambulance had responded to 110 Jewel St. in Star Prairie at approximately 4:30 p.m. on Sunday, December 2 for a report of a baby that had stopped breathing. The child was taken to Westfield Hospital in New Richmond and then transferred to Children's Hospital in St. Paul.

The child's father, Joshua Alan Schaak, age 22, was the primary and only care giver for the last three weeks. The child's mother, after determining through DNA tests that Schaak was the father, took the child there and left her in his care. Schaak initially stated that the child had bumped her head in the bathtub.

On December 4 the child was taken off life support and died at 2:30 a.m. as a result of her injuries. An autopsy conducted by the Ramsey County Medical Examiners Office revealed external soft tissue contusions and an internal examination revealed evidence of closed head trauma and multiple rib fractures.

Investigators re-interviewed Joshua Schaak on December 5. Schaak stated that he had become frustrated, shaken the baby and then forcefully directed her to the bed where she struck her head on the wall.

The St. Croix County District Attorney's office has filed second degree reckless homicide charges against Schaak. He is currently being held in the St. Croix County Jail, bail has been set at $200,000.