What happened to the mother in this home? She has been erased from this account with no explanation.
Instead, we inexplicably have what appears to be a custodial father, who abused his daughter AT LEAST TWICE, inflicting blunt force trauma to her head. She now has permanent neurological injuries as a result. Yet Daddy is granted supervised visitation, and CPS and his family think he's just great. Typical excuses and denials made for male violence against children. If a mother had inflicted injuries this severe, she would have been demonized as a monster.
And get this. The dude wants to be the "primary caretaker" of his kids again. Damn, the dude's got balls, doesn't he?
Dad is identified as MICHAEL VALDEZ.
G.I. father accused of child abuse sentenced to probation
Posted: Friday, October 12, 2012 9:19 pm | Updated: 12:50 am, Sat Oct 13, 2012.
By Harold Reutter
Posted on October 12, 2012
by Harold Reutter
Grand Island resident Michael Valdez was sentenced Friday by District Court Judge James Livingston to two years of probation for each of two counts of misdemeanor child abuse.
Valdez, 39, 1511 N. Huston, originally had been charged with two felony counts of child abuse, but pleaded no contest as the result of a plea bargain that reduced both charges to misdemeanors.
Valdez had faced up to a year in jail and up to a $1,000 fine for each of the misdemeanor charges. If he had been convicted of the original felony charges, Valdez could have been sentenced to up to 50 years in prison for each charge.
Hall County Attorney Mark Young previously had told The Independent that the case involved Valdez’s daughter, who was born on Feb. 11, 2011. Young said that doctors at Children’s Hospital in Omaha said the young girl suffered from blunt-force trauma at least twice and that it had caused permanent injuries to her physical functioning.
Another prosecutor in Young’s office had said during Valdez’s initial court appearance that the infant girl had been treated for retinal hemorrhaging, as well as fluid and blood on her brain.
Young also told The Independent that Valdez had admitted striking his daughter pretty hard on April 18, 2011. The attorney said Valdez also had access to the infant from April 1 to April 10, 2011.
The information in the felony charges alleged that one instance of child abuse occurred on April 18 and that the other incident occurred sometime between April 1 and April 10.
When the plea bargain was announced, Young told The Independent that he had concerns about being able to prove that Valdez was the only person who could have injured the baby between April 1 and April 10, 2001. “Your pleas are always driven by the facts you have,” Young said at the time.
However, Todd Elsbernd, the attorney for Valdez, said that had the case gone to trial, he had a medical expert from Ohio who would have testified that the baby suffered thrombosis, a type of clot in a blood vessel that can obstruct the flow of blood.
“The injuries sustained mimic – and that’s an important word here, ‘mimic,’ child abuse, but aren’t child abuse,” said Elsbernd at the time the plea bargain was announced.
At Friday’s sentencing hearing, Young argued for jail time for Valdez because of the very significant injuries his baby had sustained. He said jail was commensurate with the harm that had occurred.
However, Elsbernd reminded Livingston that had the case gone to trial, he would have produced a medical expert who would have testified that no child abuse had occurred.
Elsbernd also pointed to supervised visits that Valdez had made to his daughter under the supervision of the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services. He said DHHS reports indicated that Valdez was a father who could attend to his children’s needs. His attorney also noted that Valdez had the support of family who believes he is able to properly care for his children.
“His goal is to raise his children,” Elsbernd said. “He wants to be the primary caregiver for his children.”
Before announcing his sentence, Livingston said that he would only rely on the information that had been placed before him as part of the pre-sentence investigation of the misdemeanor charges, not the more serious allegations by the Hall County attorney’s office in the earlier court proceedings.
Livingston noted the support that Valdez is receiving from his family and the positive intervention from DHHS. However, the judge also noted the harm suffered by the child. The judge said he wished he could look into Valdez’s “mind and heart and see if you fully understand the significance of what happened.”
Based on the information presented to him, Livingston then sentenced Valdez to two years probation on the first count and two years probation on the second count, with the sentences to run concurrently.
Numerous family members were present during the sentencing and left the courtroom with Valdez, with a couple of the women wiping tears from their eyes.