A jury has found dad MICHAEL ANTHONY DOUGLAS guilty of felony child abuse resulting in serious injury, but not attempted murder. Dad was another one of these guys who hit the baby, who was only 20-days old, for crying. The baby's skull was fractured, leaving him brain-damaged. I guess the jury bought the line that Daddy "was an immature, inexperienced parent who was simply trying to get the child to stop crying."
Frankly, I don't buy that at all. How "immature" do you have to be to know that you don't slam a newborn in the head?
More evidence of the kid glove treatment that too many child abusers, especially fathers, receive in our legal system. Moms who mistreat their children are labeled scum not fit to be in human society; dads who nearly kill or even murder their children are merely "immature" or "inexperienced." Frustrated" is another adjective you see a lot in these narratives. Yes, there is a double standard, and it doesn't favor moms.
More evidence? The mother of Baby Gabriel (who has had MAJOR media coverage recently) is being held on a cash only $1.1 million dollar bond. I don't particularly like this woman or respect her, but so far there is no evidence that she injured or killed this child (though that may change). Her only offense thus far is custodial interference; she wanted to put the child up for adoption, and Dad wouldn't cooperate. Right now, there is a major societal stigma against mothers who assume custodial rights to their own children in defiance of the "father's rights." And frankly that stigma is stronger than any societal stigma against those who actually abuse or murder their children.
Want more proof? Scroll down and check out all the dads who actually KILLED their children, who are gettting bail in the $100 to $200K range, like dad NICHOLAS McKEE ($150,000) and custodial dad DUKE WATROUS ($200,000 reduced to $100,000). And also the lenient sentences these guys usually get when they are convicted.
Father who hit infant convicted of abuse, not attempted murder
January 11, 2010 8:00 PM
JOHN C. ENSSLIN
A jury on Monday acquitted a Colorado Springs man of trying to kill his infant son but found him guilty of child abuse that left the boy brain-damaged.
The eight-woman, four-man jury took about three hours to find Michael Anthony Douglas, 25, not guilty of first-degree attempted murder and guilty of felony child abuse resulting in serious injury.
He is scheduled to be sentenced March 29.
According to police, Douglas hit his 20-day-old son while he was crying on Oct. 10, 2007, at the Cedar Creek Club Apartments at 1020 S. Chelton Road.
The blow fractured the boy’s skull and has damaged his ability to speak and walk normally, prosecutors said.
In closing arguments Monday, Deputy District Attorney Brien Cecil argued that there was no excuse or reason for what Douglas did.
“He knew what he was doing,” Cecil said. “He knew it was practically certain to cause that result.”
But defense attorney Cynthia McKedy argued that Douglas was an inexperienced, immature parent who simply was trying to get the child to stop crying.
“We are not contesting the injuries. They are real and they are profound,” she told jurors. But her client did not “knowingly” try to kill his son, she said.
“He was frustrated. He was overwhelmed,” she said.
About an hour before returning the verdict, the jury asked 4th Judicial District Judge Gilbert A. Martinez to clarify the legal meaning of the word “knowingly.”
After the verdict, the boy’s grandmother, Ronda Denton, held the youngster in her arms outside the courtroom.
As for the verdict, Denton said, “It is what it is. I wished for a bigger verdict, but I’m OK,” she said.
Her grandson just recently began to walk.
“I’ve no idea what he’ll be like in five years, but he’s a miracle,” she said. “Everything with this little guy is a milestone.”