Couple Arrested After Police Found 2-Month-Old Son Unresponsive With Broken Bones

Miami, Florida: Stephen Michael Palmer, 42, and Tina Joy Palmer, 37, of Miami Beach are being charged with felonies after it was found that their 2-month-old baby was unconscious and had over a dozen rib fractures, among other unsettling indicators of serious physical abuse.

The tragedy happened at their South Beach apartment in the Edwards Apartments on January 3, 2024. Arrest warrants state that while his wife Tina was at work, Stephen Palmer, who claimed to be his son’s primary caregiver, discovered the child unresponsive.

Emergency personnel showed up quickly, took the infant to Mount Sinai Medical Center, where they performed CPR, and then sent him to Nicklaus Children’s Hospital so that he could receive additional care in the pediatric intensive care unit. The baby suffered 18 rib fractures, all of which were still healing, according to Miami Beach police. There was also a brain bleed, which most likely left lifelong scars and caused neurological damage.

The infant also had several scabs and a clearly damaged, enlarged, and bleeding left testicle. As indicated in the warrants, law enforcement believed that these injuries were suggestive of abuse. The infant’s parents assert that they are unaware of how the child got such serious wounds.

Stephen Palmer was unable to explain what had happened before his son became unconscious in an interview with a child protection professional, and he made no mention of any previous medical issues. Tina Palmer told the employee that her son had been fussier and crying more than normal that day, which she attributed to a congested nose and less milk intake. Neither parent admitted to any mishaps or falls.

Stephen and Tina Palmer did not answer the door when investigators tried to talk with them, so they had to get a warrant. On allegations of aggravated child abuse/torture causing great bodily harm and child neglect causing great bodily damage, a judge ordered Stephen Palmer’s detention without bond.

A charge of child negligence inflicting grave bodily injury has kept Tina Palmer detained on a $100,000 bond. Both parents are being imprisoned at Miami-Dade’s Turner Guilford Knight Correctional Center; they were told not to contact the child if they were released from custody.