Police: Man said he hurt 4-year-old boy 'in a playful manner'

Posted: Updated:
Steven Darrell Nelson (Source: Maricopa County Sheriff's Office) Steven Darrell Nelson (Source: Maricopa County Sheriff's Office)
Steven Darrell Nelson (Source: Maricopa County Sheriff's Office) Steven Darrell Nelson (Source: Maricopa County Sheriff's Office)
PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) -

A Phoenix man is facing charges of child abuse after allegedly putting a 4-year-old boy in the hospital for three weeks.

Police arrested Steven Darrell Nelson Wednesday.

According to Nelson’s court paperwork, “[a]ll [of the child’s] injuries are consistent with non-accidental trauma.”

Doctors at Phoenix Children’s Hospital reported a long list of injuries from head to toe, including a broken arm, a broken leg, numerous severe internal injuries, several bruises “in various stages of healing,” and what appeared to be older fractures.

According to the probable cause for arrest statement, the little boy was forensically interviewed and named Nelson as the person who hurt him.

Detectives spoke with both the child’s mother – who said she was not responsible for her son’s condition – and Nelson.

“Steven was interviewed and made multiple statements of him hurting the victim but said [it was] in a playful manner,” the arrested office wrote in the probable cause for arrest statement. “Steven told me if I saw the victim again, to tell him he was sorry and he hoped one day they could be friend[s].”

The officer said Nelson then requested a lawyer “as is was in his best interest.”

A judge set a secured appearance bond of $50,000.

Nelson is due back in court on March 28 for a status conference, and then again on March 30 for a preliminary hearing.