Man accused of shaking 10-month-old, saying baby needed to ‘toughen up’

WYOMING COUNTY, W.Va. (WVNS) — A couple from West Virginia is facing felony charges of child abuse involving a 10-month-old baby.

Rebecca L. Lester and Ryan G. Campbell were arrested on Saturday, March 3.

According to court documents, on January 5 troopers obtained records saying the baby was seen by hospital staff who found bruises on the baby’s head.

The baby was previously transported to a hospital in Raleigh County for seizures and unresponsiveness. A witness told troopers he saw Campbell, who is Lester’s boyfriend, kicking and shaking the baby for about 15 minutes while saying the baby needed “toughen up.”

During this time, the witness said Lester was upset and crying, saying she didn’t know what to do and didn’t want to make Campbell mad.

The 10-month-old then stopped breathing. The witness said Lester and Campbell started screaming for help and performed CPR until EMS arrived.

Another witness said she saw Campbell pull the baby’s hair and kick her car seat over while the baby was inside.

Campbell was allegedly on meth at the time of the reported abuse.

Campbell is being held in the Southern Regional Jail on a $10,000 bond. Lester is at the Southern Regional Jail on a $5,000 bond.