Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Dad pleads guilty to abusing 3-month-old son (Coshocton, Ohio)

He bit a baby? Burned him with cigarettes? Inflicted bruises and broken bones? What a sicko pup. This is pretty much torture that this guy inflicted on a helpless infant. 

Confusing account, in that the wife is not clearly identified as the mother. 

Dad is identified as CHRISTOPHER STARKEY.

Christopher Starkey changes plea in child endangering case

Jun. 19, 2013 7:24 PM

Written by Valerie Boateng Staff Writer

COSHOCTON — The grandmother of a baby who was hospitalized for numerous physical injuries in January said she is happy the father has finally admitted his guilt.

Christopher Starkey, the father of C.J. Starkey, changed his pleas to guilty and waived his right to a jury trial Tuesday during a pretrial conference in Coshocton County Common Pleas Court.

“I’m happy (he changed his plea),” Amy Hupp said.

“I think it would be worse on him going through a jury trial because then everything would come out.” 

Starkey, 22, was indicted by a grand jury in February on two second-degree felony charges and one first-degree misdemeanor charge of child endangering after his then-3-month-old son was hospitalized for extensive bruising to his body, bites, broken bones — including 12 fractured ribs — and cigarette burns.

Starkey entered not guilty and not guilty by reason of insanity pleas to the three counts in March and underwent an evaluation to determine whether he is competent to stand trial. Results of a Forensic Diagnostic Center District 9 competency evaluation determined he was competent.

Christopher admitted to authorities that the cigarette burns and bites on his son's body were inflicted by him, according to court documents.

Starkey and his co-defendant in the case, his wife and Hupp’s daughter, Kelsey, were living with Hupp when the abuse occurred.

C.J. was removed from the home and is now in the temporary custody of another family member. 

“I’m just ready for this all to be over with. It’s been almost six months and they’re still in the county jail,” Hupp said.

Hupp and her husband, Ed, started undergoing therapy since the baby they helped raise from birth was removed from the home. Hupp said they’re still missing their grandchild but are doing good.

“Now that we know C.J. is happy and healthy, everything has gotten better,” she said. “We see videos and pictures almost daily.”

C.J. is now 8 months old.

Prosecutor Jason Given said a sentencing for Christopher will take place after a pre-sentence investigation is completed.

Kelsey, 20, previously entered guilty pleas on a bill of information to two counts of endangering children, both second-degree felonies. She admitted in a recorded interview to harming the child and will be sentenced at 10 a.m. July 29.

Both remain in custody at the Coshocton County Justice Center — Christopher on a $75,000 bond and Kelsey on a $250,000 bond.