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Trial set in bitten child case

LAWRENCEVILLE — A trial is scheduled next week for a Suwanee mother whose 1-year-old daughter was found with human and canine bite marks, along with mysterious broken bones, two years ago.

Margaret Elaine Morast, 29, faces two counts of child cruelty in the 2009 case. Jury selection is scheduled to begin Monday.

The child’s father, Scott James Watson, was charged alongside Morast two years ago but has since died, according to court records.

A nurse at Barrow Regional Medical Center discovered the child’s injuries in March that year, after her grandparents had sought medical care for the baby’s vomiting while baby-sitting her.

The child, then 15 months old, was found to have a healed broken arm, a broken wrist, bruising to her extremities as well as human and dog bite marks, police said.

The human bite marks appeared on the child’s leg and the canine bites on her head, authorities said.

The victim’s grandparents told police they suspected Watson of inflicting the injuries when his anger-management issues got the best of him.

Morast, the child’s mother, directed blame at their baby sitter, whom she had planned to secretly film with a “Nanny Cam.” Morast told police the child had pulled their pit bull’s tail, causing the animal to bite. The human teeth imprints were the result of the parents “play biting” the child, Morast told police at the time, according to a report.

Police interviewed the baby sitter but decided against bringing charges.

Following the arrests, the Division of Family and Children Services placed the child with a grandparent.