Rockford man sentenced for abusing 21-month-old child, leaving him with brain damage

Local News

ROCKFORD, Ill. (WTVO) – A Rockford man was sentenced Monday for abusing a 21-month-old child so badly that he ended up in the hospital.

Police said that Trenton Higgins had a relationship with the child’s mother. The child, Liam, is now three years old, and while the abuse has left him with permanent brain damage, his grandma, Karlo Fayne, said the he is a smiley boy.

While Fayne said that she is happy it is finally over, what Higgins did to Liam can not be reversed, and that he took away Liam’s ability to be a child.

“The Liam we knew died on Dec. 21, 2019, he doesn’t exist anymore,” Fayne said. “He can’t walk, he can’t talk, he can’t see. I mean, he’s blind as a result of his injury.”

Fayne said that in December 2019, Liam’s mom left him with Higgins when she went to work. The little boy had to be taken to the hospital with injuries to his head and stomach, and had to be resuscitated.

“It took maybe 35 minutes to do so, and after they were able to do that, they were able to access his other injuries, which included major internal trauma, to the point his intestines were torn in two,” Fayne said.

Higgins pled guilty and was sentenced to 20 years in prison.

“I’m sorry that they ever met,” Higgins said. “If I could go back to the day they met, Oct. 31, 2019, if we could go back to that, I just wish he would have walked away.”

Fayne’s son now has full custody of Liam, and they now live in Tennessee. Liam also stays with his grandma there, and has full time care through several nurses. She said that what Higgins did has been hard on their family.

“My son is an amazing, amazing father. He took the ability for him to run and play with Liam, to be ever able to play ball. He won’t ever hear him say daddy,” Fayne said. “As far as what he took from Liam, he took normalcy, he took his life.”

Fayne said that she has made it her mission to keep Liam healthy and safe, and that her family is happy with sentencing and is looking forward to moving on.

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