Saturday, April 28, 2012

Dad pleads guilty to throwing, biting infant son (Dothan, Alabama)

Dad BENJAMIN SMITH was angry, see, because the baby was crying and all.

Dothan dad gets prison time for injuries to infant son
Suspect pleaded guilty to throwing, biting baby

By: Matt Elofson | Dothan Eagle

A Dothan father received an eight-year prison sentence Wednesday for throwing his infant son onto a couch, breaking the child's leg.

Houston County Circuit Court Judge Butch Binford sentenced 19-year-old Benjamin Smith to an eight-year prison term for a felony aggravated child abuse charge.

Dothan Police Detective Cpl. Chris Barberree said Smith confessed to throwing his son 6 to 8 feet onto a couch. The child then bounced onto the floor, breaking his leg. Barberree said the infant also had cuts and bite marks on his body.

Barberree also said Smith told police he threw the baby because he was angry he was crying.

“I think what he did to this child from a societal standpoint is inexcusable,” said Assistant Houston County District Attorney Banks Smith. 

Court records indicate Dothan police arrested Smith in April of last year on a charge involving his throwing the 4-month-old boy on a couch. Police also charged Smith with biting the boy’s leg.

Banks Smith reminded the court that Benjamin Smith was to also be sentenced for a felony second-degree receiving stolen property case.

Binford sentenced Benjamin Smith to four years in prison for the stolen property charge, and ordered it to be served concurrently with the child abuse charge.

“I will deny any application for probation in your cases based upon the injury to the child,” Binford said.

Benjamin Smith faced two to 20 years in prison for the class B crime of aggravated child abuse, and one to 10 years for the stolen property charge, a class C felony.

Attorney Shaun McGhee asked the court for a minimum sentence citing his client’s clean criminal record and that his client had already spent a year in jail. McGhee also reminded the court the baby has recovered from his injuries.