Louisville mother of dead 5-month-old now facing criminal abuse charge

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- Louisville Metro Police say the mother of a 5-month-old boy who died of multiple blunt force injuries has been arrested and charged with criminal abuse, in addition to the man who was already charged with murder in connection with the boy's death.

Noah Ballard-Jones died March 16 at Kosair Children's Hospital, two days after he was brought there from his home near the corner of 22nd Street and Date Street. He was in a coma before he passed away. After Noah's death, the coroner ruled he died from multiple blunt force injuries caused by "inflicted trauma."

Police arrested 24-year-old Leon Montgomery, the ex-boyfriend of the child's mother, last Wednesday, and charged him with murder and first degree criminal abuse.

Wednesday night, police also arrested the boy's mother, 20-year-old Brittney Ballard, and charged her with first degree criminal abuse. According to the arrest report, Ballard was, "the custodial parent on multiple occasions when Noah suffered severe and significant injuries that required medical attention and medical attention was not sought."

"On Monday, March 14, Noah was transported to KCH [Kosair Children's Hospital] in cardiac arrest," the report states. "Documented injuries during treatment include fractures to Noah's right arm and leg, 11-13 rib fractures an a skull fracture. The arm and rib fractures were in various stages of healing."

Ballard made her first court appearance on Thursday morning. A courtroom is the last place she expected to be a week after her son's funeral.

"This arrest of Brittney is crushing to the whole family," said Christopher 2X, with Fight Crimes Against Children.

2X is also a family friend and said this is a double blow to the family.

"Definitely devastated," he said.

It's a family that is still grieving the unsolved murder of Andre Ballard, who was robbed and shot to death in 2012.

"That's Brittney's uncle, and of course, the child's great uncle," 2X said.

Last week, after Montgomery's arrest and arraignment, there was a chaotic scene outside the courtroom. His family said Montgomery was not the only person who should be in jail. Their words hit the mark this week, when Brittney Ballard was indeed arrested.

"Based upon the nature of the allegations, it is the county's motion to increase the bond to $100,000 full-cash," said a Jefferson County prosecutor, during the arraignment.

With tears in her eyes, Ballard rocked back and forth in court on Thursday morning as she listened to the judge and prosecutor discuss her fate.

"Alright," the judge said. "Based upon the nature of the offense, the court finds you to be a danger to community. The bond is going to be raised to $100,000 full-cash."

Ballard's mother declined an on-camera interview, but she did speak up in court.

Ballard's mother: "Your honor?

Judge: "Yes, ma'am?"

Ballard's mother: "This is her mom."

Judge: "Okay."

Ballard's mother: "She's not -- to me, I feel like she's not a danger to society."

Judge: "Ma'am, I've already made my findings, so, we're not going to hear any arguments today."

Ballard is currently at Louisville Metro Corrections. She is not charged with murder.

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