Police: Florida Couple Left Severely Scalded Baby In Car While They Shopped At Walmart

A Florida couple has been arrested, and the authorities claim they caused a baby to suffer extreme burns associated with being scalded. That’s not the only shocking detail in this case of alleged child neglect. WFLA News reports that 25-year-old Cayla Zarva and 24-year-old Dennis Zipprian made a series of poor choices, which led to a young child being tragically injured.

Police say that Cayla Zarva, the mother of the victim, left the infant in the care of her boyfriend, Dennis Zipprian, so she could go to work. At some point, while caring for the baby, Zipprian told authorities he took a shower while holding him. The Florida man admitted to authorities that he laid the young child, who is too young to walk, on the floor of the shower with the water still running. However, he claimed that he checked the temperature, and it was warm, not hot. He told police that he left the room for a few minutes to go get dressed, but he didn’t reportedly offer an explanation why he chose to leave the baby in the shower alone.

The Florida man told police that he heard the baby begin to cry after he had been left alone in the shower for approximately three minutes. He said he did not go back to check on the baby at that time. Instead, he chose to leave the child alone for an additional two to four minutes for some reason. Zipprian told police that when he finally went to check on the baby, he noticed that he had been badly scalded by the shower water, and the water coming from the shower head had become very hot. The baby was badly scalded on his buttocks, face, and genitals, as well as his inner thighs.

Instead of calling 911, or immediately transporting the baby to an emergency room, Zipprian chose to drive the baby to Pizza Hut, where the victim’s mother was working. The Florida woman took the rest of the shift off, and the couple drove back to their home instead of taking the child to the ER for immediate medical attention. After arriving at their home, they left again and drove with the severely burned child to a nearby Walmart store. Police say that the Florida couple left the infant in the running vehicle when they went inside to purchase first aid items, which included gauze pads and burn cream. They also reportedly purchased popcorn, cereal, and milk; all of which was detailed on receipts obtained by law enforcement.

It wasn’t until approximately 1:39 a.m. the following day that the couple decided to take the badly scalded baby to an emergency room.

This isn’t the first time a child’s parents have been arrested for similar crimes. Earlier this year, a San Antonio couple was arrested after a three-year-old boy was severely scalded as an alleged form of punishment. My San Antonio reports that 23-year-old Kris Smith was charged with first-degree felony injury to a child causing serious bodily injury, with intent. She is accused of holding the child under scalding hot water to punish him for soiling his pants.

Last year, a Connecticut mom was arrested after her 20-month-old son was badly burned in a bath. NBC News CT reports that Elizabeth Mendez-Marchany was charged with assault and risk of injury to a minor, and she was accused of leaving her baby alone in the running bath. The water was reportedly scalding-hot, which caused severe burns to the infant’s body.

As for this latest case, police confirm that Cayla Zarva and Dennis Zipprian have been charged with child neglect with great bodily harm. The infant in this tragic case had to be hospitalized for three days while the severe burns to his body were treated. No news reports have clarified the current custody situation of the child.

[Featured Image by Manatee County Jail]