13-Month-Old Baby Remains in Foster Care

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Wednesday was only the first step regarding custody of the 13-month-old baby and her siblings.

As we told you earlier this month, authorities say the child was brutally assaulted when the baby's mother left her and her other two children at home with a convicted sex offender.

The child sustained multiple skull fractures, a broken leg, bruising on her body, and sexually related wounds. The other two children, ages three and four, were not assaulted, but in Wednesday’s hearing a nurse practitioner who treated the children said both had very severe cases of lice and smelled of urine.

Since the incident, the baby has been in foster care in Temple, so the child will be close to Scott and White for treatment. The other two children are in foster care in Bryan.

"As far as our case goes, we'll get with the parents and try to come up with a permanent plant to figure out what exactly is going to happen with the children, what the plan will be for reunification, try to bring the family back together. We can place with a relative if we find an appropriate relative or there's always a chance they could be adopted," Chris Van Deusen with the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services said.

Twenty-three-year-old Jerry Rangel is charged with aggravated sexual assault of the child, and aggravated assault causing bodily injury. Rangel told authorities he doesn't know what happened to the little girl, but admitted he'd been drinking and doing drugs hours before the alleged incident. His bond is set at $1.5 million.

The children's mother did not testify because she requested an attorney. The father of one of the children did testify, asking for custody of the two older children. The next custody hearing is scheduled for April.