Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Dad sentenced for beating 4-month-old son, pregnant mom; gets special sentencing deal even though baby still has neurological problems (West Chester, Pennsylvania)

Notice that this sh**head still got a special deal on sentencing. Abuser daddy coddling--it just never ends, does it?

Dad is identified as BARRY HILL.


Coatesville man sentenced for abusing baby, beating girlfriend


Posted: 07/08/14, 10:43 AM EDT | WEST CHESTER — A Coatesville man who beat his 4-month-old so badly that the child was hospitalized with brain injuries for more than two months blamed the downward spiral of his life on chronic substance abuse at his sentencing Monday.

“For the last couple of years, drugs and alcohol have caused a major downfall in my life,” Barry Hill told President Judge James P. MacElree II as he was about to be sentenced on charges of aggravated assault, simple assault, endangering the welfare of a child and driving under the influence.

Hill pleaded guilty to the charges as part of a plea agreement.

“I’ve lost pretty much everything in my life, my family, my job,” Hill, 30, said in a muffled voice as he stood before the judge. At the same time he admitted to abusing his son, he also acknowledged that he beat his girlfriend when she was pregnant with their third child.

MacElree, however, told the defendant that he was lucky about one thing — that he and his attorney, Assistant Public Defender Meredith Copeland, had been able to work out a sentence that would see him sentenced to four to eight years in state prison for the child abuse, and concurrent time for the other charges. Had he appeared in court without an agreement, the judge suggested, his sentence would have been far harsher.

“The facts here are very disturbing,” MacElree said, with Hill nodding his head in agreement.

According to the case that Deputy District Attorney Deborah Ryan laid out for MacElree, Coatesville police and emergency personnel were called to the house in the 200 block of West Chestnut Street that Hill shared with his girlfriend and the mother of his two children, Rachel Davis, at about 1 a.m. Feb. 18, 2012, for the report of a child in cardiac arrest.

When authorities arrived, they rushed the child first to Brandywine Hospital and then to Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, or CHOP. There, Dr. Hui-fai Fong examined he child and found a skull fracture, subdural bleeding, contusions, bruises on his belly, broken ribs and a lacerated liver.

Fong told city police Detective Shawn Dowds that the injuries were non-accidental and a clear sign of abuse. He said the head injuries would have been caused by shaking the child into a whiplash situation, and that he had also detected rib fractures that were partially healed, suggesting that there had been earlier injuries.

When Dowds interviewed Davis, she told him that when she went out the night of the incident with friends, she left the 4-month-old and her 19-month-old son in the hands of their father, Hill. She said the younger boy appeared to be fine when she left around 8 p.m.

Hill was interviewed by police twice, Ryan said, changing his story about what happened both times.

The first interview took place at Brandywine Hospital in the early morning of Feb. 18, 2012, Hill told a police investigator that he had been drinking several beers that evening, but that he did not do anything to the child. He said, however, that an alarm clock had fallen on the baby’s head two days before, but that he did not require medical attention.

On Feb. 23, 2012, the same day police spoke to Davis, Hill was interviewed again and admitted that he did shake the baby to try to wake him up the morning of the incident, and that while doing so the door to the bedroom fell off its hinges and may have stuck the child. He also said that when he tried to do CPR on the baby, he might have hit his head on an electric drill that was lying on the child’s bed.

The 4-month old was kept at CHOP in intensive care, Ryan told MacElree, for two months, and was later transferred to a rehabilitation hospital. The boy still suffers the aftereffects from his brain injuries, she noted.

Dowds filed charges against Hill on Jan. 16, 2013.

Between the night of the incident involving the 4-month-old and his arrest, Hill was also charged with simple assault after city police were called to the house on West Chestnut Street around 11:45 p.m. on June 13, 2012 for a domestic dispute call. There, Davis told officers that Hill had punched her repeatedly in the face and stomach. She said she was 7½ months pregnant.

Then, on Dec. 7, 2013, when Hill was out on bail on both cases, he was driving on Route 30 in Caln when he collided with another car around 3:30 p.m. Officers said he showed signs of intoxication, could not pass field sobriety tests and was taken to the hospital where his blood was drawn. He had a blood alcohol count of .207, more than twice the legal limit.

In addition to the prison sentence, Hill will have to serve five years of probation after his release on parole. He also is not permitted to have unsupervised contact with the children after his release from prison.