Dad JERRY SCHRODE is being called a "sick monster" who not only severely injured his 6-month-old daughter, but mostly likely killed his ex-girlfriend's son as well. Sometimes the fathers' rights crowd makes a big distinction between "real" fathers and boyfriends, but it's mostly imaginary. If you're a sick f*ck who batters babies for crying, then you're a sick f*ck who batters babies for crying. Having a DNA link to the infant doesn't really have much impact with these dudes.
Posted: Fri 7:30 PM, Aug 03, 2012
Reporter: WSAZ News Staff, Randy Yohe
Updated: Fri 9:38 PM, Aug 03, 2012
WSAZ INVESTIGATION: Ironton Man at the Center of Two Child Court Cases
UPDATE 8/3/12 @ 7 p.m.
LAWRENCE COUNTY, Ohio (WSAZ) -- A sick monster and a serial child abuser -- that's what some parents are saying about a local man who detectives say admits to roughing up his 6-month-old daughter.
WSAZ.com’s Randy Yohe has the latest in a WSAZ.com investigation into the troubled world of Jerry Schrode.
The 28-year-old former first responder is behind bars, facing child assault charges. He is also the sole subject of a long-running infant death investigation now coming to a head.
And, we've uncovered other child abuse charges filed against the Ironton man.
In a Lawrence County courtroom Friday morning, Schrode's child assault charge prompted a $300,000 bond.
Detectives say Schrode confessed to shaking his infant daughter, who suffered blunt force head trauma and brain and eye injuries. And they say he confessed to throwing her on a couch where she hit her head on hardwood.
Bobby Watts still grieves over the death of his 14-month-old son Harlan.
In Kentucky, state police say that in August 2011, Schrode -- who was living in Boyd County with Watts' ex-girlfriend and the mother of Harlan and the Ohio infant -- was baby sitting alone with the child.
That's when Harlan died from what the coroner says was blunt force head trauma with brain and eye injuries.
Police say Schrode was the caretaker of the child at the time of the offense.
“My son cried a lot when his mommy and daddy were not there," Watts said. "I think he shook him until he passed out, then he knew he messed up and took a dresser and TV and tipped it over on him.”
In April 2012, after eight months of investigating Harlan Watts' death, police chose not to file criminal charges against Schrode, but turn the open investigation over to the commonwealth attorney for a grand jury review.
Prosecutor David Justice says when he got the Schrode case involving Harlan Watts from state police, with no confession, the death investigation was far from complete.
“I work hard to secure a conviction," Justice said. "Some cases are weak cases."
Crystalyn Sowards says in the few months she was married to Shrode in 2010, he repeatedly choked and abused her then infant son Liam to the point of multiple hospitalizations because he cried too much.
“He said he would get him from behind and sometime hold him face down and choke him that way," Sowards said.
Sowards filed one child abuse charge against Schrode. A judge diverted the charge with no plea involved, ordered Schrode to have no contact with the infant for a year, then dismissed the entire case.
Now there's a parental cry for justice and keeping babies safe from Schrode.
“If they had locked him up the first time when this happened to my son, this would not have happened to this little girl," Watts said.
Justice says he will present the Harlan Watts' death case to a grand jury next Tuesday. He says he can tell the jury about Schrode's recent Ohio child assault case and the dismissed child abuse case involving Sowards.
Detectives say Schrode's 6-month-old daughter is now out of the hospital and in good condition. She has been placed in state custody.
We’ll tell you what the Kentucky grand jury returns next Tuesday. Keep clicking on WSAZ.com for the latest information.