Dad MICHAEL HARMAN-DEROSIER has been sentenced to 9 1/2 years in prison for the death of his infant son. This was after dad pleaded "no contest" to 2nd-degree reckless homicide.
Dad was "caretaking" when the baby developed head injuries so severe that the medical examiner compared them to "a fall from a three-story building or a severe automobile accident." Dad would have us believe that he "accidently" dropped the baby 18 inches onto a carpeted floor. However, Dad does admit to shaking the baby because "he would not stop crying."
The poor child lingered in a coma for 7 long months before he finally passed away.
Man sentenced in death of infant son
By Crocker Stephenson of the Journal Sentinel
Posted: Jan. 19, 2010
Michael Harman-DeRosier, whose wife remained at his side even after he was convicted of killing their infant son, was sentenced Tuesday to 9 1/2 years in prison.
Stephanie Harman-DeRosier, 24, asked Milwaukee County Circuit Judge Kevin Martens to show her husband mercy; her parents implored the judge to hand down the maximum sentence.
"Please don't let this baby killer get away with a slap on the wrist," her mother, Hope Carlson, told Martens. Carlson, 44, sat at the prosecutor's table beside Assistant District Attorney William Molitor.
A picture of her grandson, Micah Harman-DeRosier, was printed on her T-shirt. Micah's first teddy - a beige bear with a purple ribbon - and a collage of photographs were arranged on the table before her. She wore a heart-shaped locket with a tiny picture of Micah inside.
The courtroom behind her reflected the rift in her family.
The gallery consisted of two sections of pew-like benches with an aisle down the middle. Herhusband, Dean Carlson, 54, sat in the first row of the section to her left, surrounded by supporters. Her daughter sat in the front row of the section to her right. She, too, was surrounded by supporters.
"Has Michael suffered enough?" Stephanie Harman-DeRosier asked Martens when it was her turn to speak.
"I love my husband more now than when I said, 'I do,' " she said. "Please allow him to come home."
Micah Harman-DeRosier suffered severe head injuries on Sept. 27, 2007, while the infant was in his 25-year-old father's care.
Micah was 3 months old when he was injured and lingered in a coma for seven months. He was released from the hospital on April 4, 2008, and died at the Carlsons' home in Oak Creek a few weeks later.
Stephanie Harman-DeRosier called the infant's injuries an accident, but it remains unclear how Micah was hurt.
Michael Harman-DeRosier, who was convicted in September after pleading no contest to second-degree reckless homicide, told investigators that he accidentally dropped the child while reaching into a diaper bag, and the child fell about 18 inches onto a carpeted floor, according to a criminal complaint.
He also said he had shaken the baby non-violently because he would not stop crying, the complaint says.
A medical examiner concluded that injuries to Micah's head were comparable to a fall from a three-story building or to a severe car accident.
Harman-DeRosier did not clarify what happened when it was his turn to address Martens. He called the Carlsons "blood-thirsty" and insisted he loved his son.
"Your honor," he said, "my wife and I are just asking for mercy. What else can I say? That's all I can say."
Stephanie Harman-DeRosier wept hysterically when her husband's sentence was announced. She continued weeping as he was shackled and removed from the court. Outside the courtroom, she sat on the floor and cried.
Her cries echoed up and down the hallway. Her parents, standing a few dozen feet away, seemed unsure if they should go to her.
"Later," Hope Carlson told her husband. "Not now."