By Steve Patterson

DARBY, Pa. (CBS) — An investigation is underway after police say a trio of ferrets chewed off the nose, top lip and part of the cheek of a one-month-old baby’s face in Delaware County.

“It’s not our fault. We didn’t do it, the animals did it,” says the victim’s father Burnie Fraim.

He adds, “We left the child unattended, which we take full responsibility.”

Fraim, 42, admits to Eyewitness News that he and his fiancee left their one-month-old daughter unattended, but shouldn’t have criminal charges for the damage his pets caused.

“This little mistake happened. I wish it never did happen, but it happened.”

That “little mistake” put his infant child in the hospital.

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Police say Thursday, at a home in Darby, Fraim’s fiancee Jessica left their one-month-old daughter strapped to a car seat on the floor while she went upstairs where Burnie was sleeping.

She came back down to the sound of screaming. The couple’s three pet ferrets had attacked the baby, causing severe damage to her nose, upper lip and cheek.

Eyewitness News asked: “How bad was it, Burnie?”

Burnie: “The baby looked like, um, like it didn’t have a face.”

“This is the most horrific thing I’ve seen happen to a child in 45-years in this town. These kids need to be protected,” said Darby Borough Police Chief Robert Smythe.

Chief Smythe says the couple should be arrested and their children placed in foster care immediately.

“They cannot care for these five children,” Chief Smythe said.

Chief Smythe said all five children have special needs.

Fraim says the family has been working with the Children and Youth Division before this happened.

Police say the home wasn’t fit for children.

Eyewitness News asked, “Do you think you should be taking care of these children?”

“Like I said, we take full responsible. We can’t deny it and we can’t hide from it.”

The incident remains under investigation.