The woman accused of injuring a child she was caring for has turned herself in to Brazos County authorities.
Dana Rene Munyon, 45 of College Station, was arrested around 8:15 a.m. Friday after the Brazos County Sheriff's Office put out a warrant for her arrest Thursday. The charge is for injury to a child with intent of serious bodily injury, a first degree felony, meaning she could face up to life in prison if convicted.
Munyon is accused of hurting one-year-old Alexis Verzal (pictured below) while the child was in her care in April at what the state says was an illegally operating daycare facility in the area.
Bond was set at $25,000, but Munyon bonded out of jail less than 40 minutes after she was booked.
The family says Alexis suffered from retinal hemorrhaging and brain swelling, which are injuries consistent with Shaken Baby Syndrome.
According to court documents, Munyon called authorities April 3, saying she had a child (Alexis Verzal) that seemed out of sorts. Munyon told authorities the child had been in timeout, and did not mention any physical injuries the child may have suffered.
According to police reports, Munyon called Alexis's parents, Brandon and Tiffany, after alerting authorities. She allegedly told the toddler's mother that Alexis was on a blanket, designated as the time-out spot. Alexis had reportedly stopped crying and when Munyon when to check on her, she didn't respond.
Munyon's story was soon refuted by her own husband. According to court documents, when another parent picked up her child from the day-care, she heard a different version.
Documents state Brent Munyon told the parent that his wife was carrying one of the babies and that the baby squirmed out of her hands and that she dropped it. The baby then allegedly fell on its bottom but became lethargic, so Munyon called for help.
Doctors who treated Alexis after the incident determined her head injuries were non-accidental and not the result of a fall.
Alexis's parents say they may never know exactly what happened that day. They told us in May that they checked dozens of local child care facilities before choosing a private, in-home day care, one with 20 years experience, that came highly recommended.
"You can do all the research in the world on what the best place is to take your child and do everything by text book in terms of checking to make sure everything is ok with that place, and you just never know," Brandon Verzal said.
Alexis was taken by her parents to a rehab facility in Nebraska where the family is originally from. The parents, Brandon and Tiffany, had been working for the Texas A&M athletic department, but have since decided to move back to Nebraska permanently in order for Alexis to receive care.
The family released this statement Friday, regarding Munyon's arrest.
"Our prayers are with the Munyon family. Our family's life has changed forever as a result of Alexis' injury and we are saddened today that another family will be impacted as well. Alexis continues to make great strides in rehabilitation. We thank communities in Texas, Nebraska, and all over the country for their thoughts and prayers, and know that Alexis would not have made the progress she has without them."
Local support for the family, especially from the Aggie family, was immense. Soccer coach G. Guerrieri set up a fund for Alexis and the Verzal family through his Coach G Foundation. Members of the athletic department also sent video messages to the Verzals.
Here is contact information for that organization:
"Coach G Foundation"
PO Box 9432
College Station, TX 77840-9432