Parents, Aunt Arrested After Infant Almost Dies From Over 50 Rat Bites

(Photo via; Vanderburgh County Sheriff's Office)
(Photo via; Vanderburgh County Sheriff’s Office)

OAN’s Abril Elfi
4:49 PM – Sunday, September 24, 2023

The parents and aunt of an infant in Indiana have been charged after the child almost died in their care from “over 50 rat bites.”


The parents of a six-month-old infant and the child’s aunt were charged in Evansville, Indiana, after police said that they found the baby inside the family’s “rodent-infested” home. 

According to the arrest affidavit, Evansville Police Department officers responded to a 9-1-1 call on September 13th when the child’s father, David Anthony Schonabaum, said that his six-month-old baby was found face down in his bassinet with wounds all over his face and body.

David and his wife Angel Schonabaum reported that the baby boy had more than 50 bites on his forehead, right cheek, and nose. 

According to reports, there was a deep flesh wound on the child’s left ring finger that exposed bone. Bite marks ran down his right hand that stretched from his hand to his elbow.

Police documents also stated that all four of the child’s fingers and thumb on his right hand were “missing skin” on top, revealing the fingertip bones, with the index and pinky fingers displaying the worst wounds.

Hospital records that were released to the press asserted that the infant suffered a “near fatal event.”

The father of the child reportedly told authorities that their rat-infested house had already been professionally handled. He presented service records indicating that the residence was treated numerous times, beginning in the spring of 2023.

David also said that he lived in the home with his wife Angel and their three children. Delaina Thurman, Angel’s sister, and her two children also lived in the home.

Angel had reportedly checked herself into a mental health facility on September 10th and she was released a day early on September 13th, due to the incident involving her son.

According to the affidavits, the other children had notified a teacher at school earlier this month that mice had bitten their toes while they slept, which prompted the Department of Child Safety (DCS) to visit the residence a few days later.

However, Thurman claimed to the DCS official that the marks on her children’s toes were caused by “scratching on the bed frame.”

The Schonabaums also reportedly had two previous encounters with DCS.

David and Angel were charged with maltreatment back in December 2022 after their middle child was harmed due to “lack of care.” Later, in June 2023, DCS validated an accusation of physical abuse against David by the same child, who was 3-years-old at the time.

On Friday, Police Sergeant Anna Gray told reporters that the baby had been released from the hospital and was placed in foster care.

David, who is currently facing three counts of neglect of a dependent child violations, and his wife Angel, who is facing five, are currently being held on a $10,000 bond. Thurman, the aunt, is being held on a $2,500 bond.

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