Things That Matter

The 5-Month-Old Baby of Two Café Workers Was Thrown Against a Wall by a Babysitter, and Is Now Fighting for His Life

The 5-month-old baby Adrian Caxaj Velasquez is fighting for his life in the ICU at Texas Children’s Hospital in Houston after a babysitter threw him against a wall at a six to seven foot distance.

Adrian’s parents, Carlos Caxaj and Fidelina Velasquez, are two hardworking employees at a café in College Station, Texas who never imagined what their child would experience at the hands of his babysitter.

On January 19, Caxaj and Velasquez left Adrian with babysitter Berta Evelin Lopez-Vasquez, 21, who was recommended to the couple by friends. Just the second time leaving both Adrian and their 2-year-old son with Lopez-Vasquez, the couple would never expect the call they would receive next.

As reported by Telemundo, Lopez-Vasquez called Velasquez to let her know something was wrong with Adrian, choosing to stay quiet about the actual events. The babysitter told her, “I don’t know what’s wrong with your son but his breathing is stopping.”

Velasquez was confused since her baby was fine when she left, but she rushed home. Once she got home and called her husband Caxaj, they rushed to the hospital — only to find that Adrian had fractures in his posterior skull, had convulsed, had hermorrhages in his retina and hematomas in his forehead, eye area, and brain.

With severe injuries, swelling, and bleeding, the 5-month-old also had fractures in both legs. Adrian also reportedly stopped breathing for at least one minute.

Meanwhile, the babysitter Lopez-Vasquez initially said that Adrian had fallen from her arms accidentally as she bounced him up and down so he would stop crying. She said she failed to help the baby when he started seizing, and didn’t take him to the hospital because she wasn’t the mother. However, Texas Children’s Hospital staff soon deduced that the injuries were not accidental and instead were “caused by severe blunt force trauma.”

Once Texas Department of Family Protective Services investigators landed on the scene, Lopez-Vasquez admitted that she became “frustrated” when he wouldn’t stop crying. When changing and feeding him didn’t work, she “lost it” and started shaking the child. She then threw him to a wall six to seven feet away, causing Adrian’s eyes to roll back as he had a seizure and also stopped breathing. 

While Lopez-Vasquez is being held under a $200,000 bond, she said she didn’t immediately call 911 for fear of her own kids being taken away.

Currently, Adrian is at Texas Children’s Hospital with mother Velasquez, while father Caxaj is with their 2-year-old back in College Station. Neither parent has been able to work since the accident, with doubt around whether Velasquez will be able to go back to work at all as she continues to care for Adrian.

Meanwhile, Adrian underwent surgery on February 4 to remove internal bleeding, and is still on life support in “critical condition.” He is scheduled for his second head surgery on Thursday, although he is “doing much better with [a lot] more awareness.” He has also “been able to stay awake more and have more movement.”

Velasquez told Telemundo, “it hurts me a lot to see him like this. As his mother, I feel very destroyed and sad for my son. I only ask God for strength.” About Lopez-Vasquez, the mother explained, “[I hope] they give her the [jail] sentence she deserves.”

Van Tran, the owner of Nam Café where Caxaj and Velasquez have been employees for the last four years, is stepping in to help the couple. He created a GoFundMe that has raised more than $118,000 at time of publication for Adrian’s medical expenses.

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