- The Washington Times - Thursday, February 4, 2010

HAGERSTOWN, Md. — A man whose 5-week-old daughter died from injuries he allegedly inflicted in their Western Maryland home now faces charges of second-degree murder and manslaughter.

Prosecutors on Thursday upgraded an assault charge against 22-year-old Nicholas McKee of Warfordsburg, Pa. He also is charged with assault and child abuse.

Mr. McKee was living with daughter, Bella Appel, and her mother in Hancock when the girl was hurt Jan. 3. She died six days later.

A doctor told investigators the injuries were consistent with vigorous shaking.

Mr. McKee allegedly told an investigator that Bella had been wheezing and then stopped breathing. He allegedly said he panicked and tried flipping her on her back and belly, followed by CPR, before calling 911.

His lawyer has said Mr. McKee will plead not guilty.

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