Crime

Man accused of beating toddler at Jefferson City mall denies allegations

Man accused of beating toddler at...

COLE COUNTY, Mo. - UPDATE 6/20: Court documents ABC 17 News obtained Tuesday say Bruce Cannady Jr. denied the alleged abuse and told investigators the bruising was from rough play. Cannady allegedly told investigators he only smacked the child on the hand twice. 

ORIGINAL: A Cole County man has been charged with felony second degree domestic assault and felony abuse or neglect of a child.

Bruce Cannady Jr. is accused of kicking and hitting a child less than 18 years of age. The charges were filed on Sunday.

The charges come after police arrested a 23-year-old on suspicion of child abuse after an incident at the Capital Mall Saturday afternoon.

Jefferson City Police say they were called to the mall on Country Club Drive just before 4 p.m. Witnesses reported a man punching and kicking a 4-year-old several times before taking her and fleeing the scene.

Officers were able to identify the suspect through video cameras. He was later found with the child at a home in Jefferson City.

Police said the girl had obvious, but minor injuries. She was taken into protective custody and the man was arrested.

Jefferson City police and the Department of Family Services are still investigating.

A criminal complaint ABC 17 News obtained says Cannady has previous convictions for assault, stealing and drug charges. 


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