RAPID CITY, S.D. — A senior airman stationed at the Ellsworth Air Force Base is charged with felony child abuse after a baby was airlifted to a Sioux Falls hospital with life-threatening injuries.

The Rapid City Journal reports James Cunningham, 26, of Rapid City is charged with abuse or cruelty to a child under age 7.

Someone called 911 Tuesday evening to report the baby was unresponsive at a Rapid City home, police said.

The baby was initially taken to a hospital in Rapid City, then was taken by air to Sioux Falls. Police spokesman Brendyn Medina said an investigation found the infant's injuries were caused by an assault.

Cunningham is expected to make his initial appearance in Pennington County court Thursday. It was not immediately clear if he has hired an attorney.

Base officials said the incident occurred off base and that they are assisting law enforcement agencies with the investigation.

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