A day care worker was arrested in Baltimore, Maryland on Thursday (25 May) after a distressing video emerged of the woman "torturing" an eight-month-old, leading to the baby's death.

The woman was reportedly seen "violently snatching the child out of the crib with one arm, swinging at the baby as if she was slapping her, and placing pillows over the baby's face," police said.

The woman, identified as Leah Walden, 23, has been charged with first- and second-degree murder, first- and second-degree assault, second-degree child abuse and reckless endangerment, according to The Baltimore Sun. The victim was identified as Reese Bowman.

"Watching that video is disturbing," Criminal Investigations Chief Stanley Brandford said following the woman's arrest. "Reese Bowman, in my opinion, was tortured."

The video of the incident at Rocket Tiers Learning Center, Baltimore emerged on Tuesday and the day care centre authorities alerted the police about the video footage the next day.

The footage also showed the woman covering the baby with "excessive blankets" that even covered the child's head, police said.

Walden is expected to appear in court for a bail review on Friday morning.

The victim's family issued a statement on Thursday, saying that they were in "tremendous pain".

"Our hearts are broken. No family should ever have to experience the loss of a child under any circumstances. We await further information from the unfolding investigation," the statement read.