Father accused of leaving baby in scalding hot tub

HOUSTON - A Houston father has been accused of leaving his baby daughter in a tub of scalding hot water.

Walter Lee Cockerham, 25, was charged with injury to a child. He told officers he was distracted, but investigators aren't buying his story.

Cockerham was arrested after he called 911 for his daughter's injuries. Police said his 3-month-old daughter suffered second- and third-degree burns to nearly 45 percent of her body on Thursday at the family's apartment on Phlox.

Court documents said Cockerham was caring for the infant when he left her unattended in the tub with the hot water running. He said it was an accident and that he walked away because he was distracted by a knock at the door.

Detectives said the father was negligent and it wasn't the first time he's been in trouble with the law. Cockerham was wanted in connection with an aggravated robbery in February. His criminal record dates back to when he was 17 years old.

Cockerham is being held without bond because of the pending robbery case.

The daughter is recovering at Shriner's Hospital in Galveston. Doctors said she will require extensive reconstructive surgery.

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