published Friday, July 25th, 2014

Chattanooga man admits to rape of toddler

A 27-year-old Chattanooga man was arrested Thursday after he admitted to raping a two-and-a-half-year-old girl.

Michael Shelby Skellenger was charged with aggravated rape of a child and is in jail on a $300,000 bond. The incident happened before midnight on July 14, according to the affidavit, and came to light the next day when the toddler told her grandmother that Skellenger assaulted her and hurt her.

The grandmother reported the rape and the girl was taken to the Children's Advocacy Center, where a nurse practitioner found bruising and hemorrhaging in the area of the assault.

When interviewed by Hamilton County deputies, Skellenger said he was drunk when he sexually assaulted the girl. He at first said he didn't remember the incident, but later described the assault in detail.

He said the girl started crying uncontrollably and he stopped and "hugged her very tightly" in an attempt to calm her down. The girl told police Skellenger had hit her when she cried.

Skellenger told deputies he was a monster for committing the rape.

For complete details, see tomorrow's Chattanooga Times Free Press.

about Shelly Bradbury...

Shelly Bradbury covers police and crime in Chattanooga and Hamilton County for the Times Free Press. She's been with the paper since 2012, working first as an intern and then as a business reporter. She is from Houghton, New York, and graduated from Huntington University in Huntington, Indiana, with a bachelor’s degree in journalism and minor in management. Before moving to Tennessee, Shelly previously interned with The Goshen News, The Sandusky Register and The Mint ...

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