Friday, October 3, 2014

Dad gets 20 years for baby's nearly fatal brain injury (Fort Wayne, Indiana)

Sounds like dad CHRISTOPHER KIESEL is another one of those short-tempered, easily "frustrated" video game addicts. The type makes a very bad caretaker to have when Mom is working. Notice how he still lies and evades responsibility and blames Mom. What as @$$hole.

Published: October 3, 2014 3:00 a.m.

Young dad gets 20 years in boy’s brain injury
Rebecca S. Green | The Journal Gazette

He pleaded guilty to the crimes and his attorney insisted he felt remorse and understood the lifelong consequences brought about by nearly killing his infant son.

But as Christopher Kiesel signed his assent to no-contact orders and probation forms, he repeatedly looked toward his family and friends waiting in the back of the courtroom and shook his head angrily.

Moments earlier, the 28-year-old Kiesel was sentenced to 20 years in prison and four years on probation. He pleaded guilty in September to battery causing serious bodily injury, neglect of a dependent resulting in serious bodily injury and battery in the presence of a child.

Allen County deputy prosecutors asked for a lengthier sentence for Kiesel of more than 30 years behind bars.

After sentencing Kiesel, Allen Superior Court Judge John Surbeck asked him whether he intended to appeal. His attorney, Mark Paul Smith, told Kiesel he did not. Kiesel told the court he did not, then immediately began arguing with his attorney about how he had not hit his child and how this was all so very wrong.

Something was very wrong on March 16 when Kiesel’s then-3-month-old boy was taken to a hospital in critical condition. What was wrong were abdominal injuries so severe that inches of the infant’s intestines needed to be removed. The baby also had bleeding on his brain and retinal hemorrhages.

Kiesel’s explanation to police and medical staff at Lutheran Hospital was that he was rushing around putting kids in the car and looking for dogs that had gotten loose.

The explanation given to Department of Child Services staff made much more sense to investigators. Kiesel’s 5-year-old daughter told them she saw him pick the baby up and throw him, then punch him in the stomach and on the back.

According to court documents, Kiesel came home from work about 3 a.m. March 16 and played video games until 5 a.m. When Kiesel awoke at 9 a.m., the baby’s mother changed the infant’s diaper, fed him and put him back to sleep next to the bed where Kiesel was resting.

She left the home, leaving the children in Kiesel’s care, according to court documents. At 10:21 a.m., Kiesel sent the baby’s mother a text message saying “still crying yay no sleep.”

At 11:05 a.m., Kiesel sent another message, “three hours of crying am going to (expletive) lose it ... I can’t do the crying.”

According to the probable cause affidavit, the baby was not taken to the hospital until 5 p.m. March 16 when his mother came home.

Sent home from Riley Hospital for Children on hospice care, Kiesel’s son was not expected to survive. His grandfather testified Thursday morning about hours spent each day feeding the baby through a tube, making sure he was breathing and caring for a little boy who might never see much improvement.

“They can’t tell us for sure what long-term effects there are going to be,” said the grandfather, John Bourne.

Prosecutors showed the court pictures of a small baby, oxygen tubes in his nose, bruises on the side of his head, lying in tears on a hospital gurney.

The injuries he suffered far exceeded what prosecutors needed to prove for the elements of the crime, they argued.

But his attorney characterized him as a father who reached the end of his rope with a crying child, a place where nearly every parent finds themselves without taking the action he took.

Those texts, Smith said, showed a father who lost his cool, not a mean person.

“Chris snapped in a moment,” Smith said. “This is a terrible tragedy of a father injuring the person he loves most in the world.”

Surbeck considered Kiesel’s guilty plea in his favor as he crafted a prison sentence. But he said he was bothered by Kiesel’s continued subtle attempts to shift blame to the baby’s mother.

“His denials made it necessary for his daughter to step up,” Surbeck said.

Surbeck sentenced Kiesel to 15 years each on both the neglect of a dependent and battery causing serious bodily injury, but suspended five years of each sentence. He ordered the sentences to be served one after another for a total of 20 years behind bars and 10 years suspended. Surbeck sentenced him to 18 months on the battery in the presence of a child, but ordered that sentence to be served at the same time.

Surbeck also ordered Kiesel to pay more than $13,300 in restitution.

On Kiesel’s Facebook page, before he was taken into custody after his guilty plea, he repeatedly wrote about how heartbroken he felt.

“Words can’t describe the way I feel about life. I feel like there’s no reason for me anymore. My life has change so fast idk what to do,” he wrote at 2 a.m. Sept. 3. “Stress can do horrible things to a person. I wish I could change back time and change the things that happened knowing what I know now and having a clear head. Why does it take really bad things to happen for a person to realize something was wrong. I only wanted the best for me and my family. I love you three so much I would die to have y’all in my arms one more time.

“_Sorry people need to vent_”

But as he was led from the courtroom, Kiesel continued to imply he had not done anything wrong.