Sailor accused of burping baby too hard and breaking his son’s rib

Posted at 8:09 PM, Mar 07, 2013
and last updated 2013-03-08 07:38:10-05

Portsmouth, Va. - First it was bruising, scratching and biting; now, according to court documents, a Navy sailor is also accused of breaking his baby's rib because he burped him too hard.

21-year-old Matthew Strawn appeared in court Thursday on malicious wounding and child neglect charges.

That's on top of the felony child abuse and assault charges he received less than one month ago.

Next to him in court was his wife, 20-year-old Allie Strawn.

Police are also charging her because according to court documents, she allowed the abuse to happen when she didn’t follow a judge's protective order.

The latest incident took place inside the barracks at Naval Medical Center Portsmouth.

Strawn was living there since he was not allowed to be at home with his baby.

According to court documents, Allie somehow managed to bring their son on base to visit his father on several occasions, and even left them alone this past Monday.

The records state that when she came back from her trip to Walmart, she walked in on Matthew hitting the baby too hard on the back while trying to burp him.

A few hours later, she ended up in the emergency room, after the baby couldn't breathe, and started expelling blood and milk.

That's when doctors discovered the new broken rib, and two days later, police arrested both parents.

With their baby taken away by Child Protective Services, Matthew is still in jail, but a judge granted Allie bond.

When NewsChannel 3 tried to speak with her at the family's Portsmouth home Thursday, a sign was posted on the door—“Please respect my privacy! Thanks! No comments.”


Portsmouth parents charged with abusing infant for second time

Portsmouth father charged with abusing 11-day-old son in hospital