ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. (FOX 35 ORLANDO) - Residents along Pomelo Street in Orange County are still coming to grips with what deputies said happened in their neighborhood on Tuesday night.
“I hope it’s not true. They say the father tried to smother her or something,” said Sherman Morris.
Investigators said that’s exactly what happened. Michael Dublin, 28, is now charged with attempted murder and aggravated child abuse.
Witnesses toldl deputies that Dublin sat on his four-year-old daughter, smothering her. They also saidy he poured bleach into a water bottle, then poured the bleach into the little girl’s mouth.
At one point, deputies said he held the child on a bed with her head in the mattress and a pillow over the back of her head, when other kids in the home heard her screams for help. Morris said he realized there was a problem next door, around 7:30 p.m.
“My lady came in and said the little girl out there is sick. She’s passed out. She can’t breathe. I came to the door and that’s when I saw the little boy carrying her,” said Morris.
The child was lifeless, in the arms of a little boy.
“She was limp like a wet dish rag. She was limp,” Sherman said.
The arresting officer noted in his report that Dublin was emotionless as emergency crews rushed his daughter to the hospital. When the deputy asked Dublin what happened, deputies say Dublin told them that “everything was good,” before asking if he was going to jail.
Dublin has a long criminal history. Charges range from battery to theft and drugs. Court records reveal Dublin was involuntarily committed to a mental health hospital within the last year.
According to one court document, Dublin's mother told the court last year that her son was off his medication for schizophrenia. A letter from Dublin’s fiancée stated that he had recently been diagnosed with mental illnesses.
Tuesday evening witnesses told deputies that Dublin was at his mom's home visiting his mom and his daughter.
Dublin is now being held without bond.