***Caution: The details of this sweet baby's death are graphic and truly horrifying.***


It only took a moment for Pinellas sheriff deputies responding to a 911 call to determine that 3-month-old Olivia Dykes died a violent death. The infant's face, neck and head were bloodied, bruised and cut, Pinellas County Sheriff Bob Gualtieri said Saturday.

More bruising covered her tiny feet, as if she had been swung around a room, hurled into objects, Gualtieri said. She sustained two skull fractures.

"He slammed her hard," the sheriff said. "He slammed her very hard."

Melissa Schroll returned from a job interview at about 7:00 in the evening on Wednesday, February 18th... Schroll and Dykes went to sleep at about 7:00 p.m. and were awakened by the crying 3-month-old at about midnight. Dykes allegedly got up to feed the baby... Olivia woke up crying again at about 12:30 a.m. and Dykes went to tend to the child again.

According to police, when the mother — Schroll — woke up at 4:15 a.m. she saw the baby and thought she was sleeping. About 2 hours later, she stepped outside of the house and that is when the father — Dykes — suddenly came out holding the unresponsive baby and screaming that she was dead...

After speaking with the suspect, Sheriff Gualtieri said that Dykes blames the Xanax that he was taking as the reason that the child was harmed.

"Devastated" was the first word Melissa Schroll said to 10 News Reporter Sarah Hagen... "They wired me today... He admitted it. Hit her head"...

He says people that know the suspect, and investigators were blindsided by this tragedy. "This is one off the radar. We looked for info on mental health issues, but we didn't find anything." The Sheriff says Dykes does have a record for drugs and guns, but nothing domestic violence-related.
Steven Dykes has been charged with first degree murder.