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    Police officer allegedly raped 13-month-old who suffered broken bones and severe bruising


    LYKENS, Pa. (TCD) -- A 28-year-old police officer has been suspended from duty after he allegedly raped a 13-month-old girl in his care and caused severe injuries.

    According to a report from Pennsylvania State Police, members of the Lykens Patrol responded to a report of severe bruising to a 13-month-old caused between April 11 and April 15. The victim was transported to Hershey Medical Center, where medical staff determined the child had sustained broken bones and severe bruising.

    Criminal complaints reviewed by WHP-TV specified the injuries, saying she suffered a broken tibia and fibula. Medical professionals also noticed the girl showed signs of sexual violence, police said.

    According to WHTM-TV, the 13-month-old's mother told investigators the victim fell during bath time. She also reportedly "went on to provide implausible explanations for several other injuries to the victim's body" and said the family dog caused the child's severe bruises.

    Police identified Steven Cugini as a suspect. During an interview, he told investigators he changed the girl's diapers and bathed her, and she suffered injuries in the restroom.

    According to WHTM, the victim's mother also told authorities Cugini locked himself in the restroom with the child, and she could hear crying and loud sounds.

    Cugini eventually confessed to police that the victim sustained the injuries while he was watching her alone, WHP reports. Authorities did not specify Cugini's relationship to the child.

    According to police, on April 16, the Dauphin County District Attorney's Office approved criminal charges against Cugini. WHTM reports that the suspect faces multiple charges, including rape of a child, aggravated indecent assault of a child, and aggravated assault. He was booked into the Dauphin County Jail on $200,000 bail.

    According to a statement from York City Police Commissioner Michael Muldrow, Cugini has been suspended pending the investigation.

    Muldrow said, "If these allegations are founded, trust and believe I'll be the first to take swift and definitive action against them."

    TRUE CRIME DAILY: THE PODCAST covers high-profile and under-the-radar cases every week. Subscribe to our YouTube page and don’t forget to follow us on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter. You can also subscribe to our True Crime Daily newsletter.

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