UPDATE: Apple Valley Man Facing Charges after Infant Dies from Injuries

Michael Anthony Herkal Photo: Dakota County
Michael Anthony Herkal

August 14, 2018 05:09 PM

UPDATE: The 13-day-old infant has died from serious injuries, according to the Dakota County Attorney's Office. 

The father, 32-year-old Michael Anthony Herkal, is charged with first-degree assault and malicious punishment of a child.

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Once the office gets the autopsy results from the Hennepin County Medical Examiner's Office, additional charges will be filed, a press release states. 


The Dakota County Attorney's Office says a 32-year-old Apple Valley man was been charged with first-degree assault and malicious punishment of a child in connection to injuries suffered by a 13-day-old infant Sunday.

A release states Michael Anthony Herkal is the father of the child. He made his first court appearance Tuesday. Bail was set at $1 million without conditions and $750,000 with conditions.

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According to the criminal complaint, the child is only breathing with assistance and is not expected to survive.

The complaint states Apple Valley police officers were dispatched to a residence Sunday night on a report of an infant not breathing. Two 911 calls were placed, the first by the child's mother, who was not at the residence, but alleged she received a call from Herkal saying the baby wouldn't wake up.

Herkal also reportedly called 911 afterward to report the baby was "limp and not breathing." Officers who arrived at the scene reportedly found the child laying on the living room floor in front of a couch, and observed that his "lips were blue in color and his extremities were beginning to turn purple at both ends." 

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According to the complaint, the officers began chest compressions and administered an Automated External Defibrillator. During that interaction, they reportedly observed several bruises on various parts of his body. The infant was transported to Fairview Ridges Hospital, then later to Children's Masonic Hospital.

The complaint states it was determined he had a skull fracture and blood on his brain.

Herkal originally told authorities another child had pulled the infant off the couch on two separate occasions, the complaint states. However, he allegedly later changed his story, and said he was changing the infant's diaper and the child was kicking. So he squeezed the infant's body.

The infant's mother reportedly told authorities she and Herkal had gotten into an argument earlier in the day, and that she had fed the infant in the garage to avoid him. She said she then went back inside, handed the infant to Herkal and left. She said she began receiving texts from Herkal saying the infant would not stop crying and needed her.

The complaint further alleges that Herkal's cell phone was forensically examined. During that search, it was determined Google searches were conducted around an hour and 20 minutes before Herkal's 911 call using search terms like "someone threw a baby on the floor," "baby breathing hard," "noisy baby breathing: what's normal and what's not," "babys butt is blue," and "babys butt is blue s(p)anking."

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Frank Rajkowski

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