Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Dad gets one year in jail for forcibly breaking leg of infant son (Cache County, Utah)

Dad is identified as SEAN PAUL RICHMOND.


Cache Valley man gets year in jail for breaking infant son's leg

Posted: Tuesday, October 7, 2014 2:58 pm

By Amy Macavinta

A father who plead guilty to charges of forcibly breaking his infant son’s leg will serve one year in the Cache County Jail.

Sean Paul Richmond, 29, was charged with second-degree felony child abuse in February 2013. He finally accepted a plea deal this summer and entered a guilty plea to a third degree felony.

When he walked into the 1st District courtroom Tuesday, he was facing zero to five years in the Utah State Prison.

His attorney, Stephen Loos, stood before Judge Kevin Allen and offered the argument that incarceration would serve no purpose for Richmond, for the victim, or the community.

“There is no person more vulnerable in our society than a 5-month-old baby who depends on its parents for everything,” said Deputy Cache County Attorney Spencer Walsh.

The baby boy was treated in mid-January 2013 for a broken femur, finger-mark bruising on his chest, and other bruises to his body and some scratches.

According to Walsh, medical reports show the baby’s leg had a spiral fracture, which is reportedly indicative of a break caused by “a lot of force” and a “twisting” motion.

“This does not occur by pushing the baby’s legs up toward his chest to relieve gas as the defendant has indicated,” Walsh said. “Child abuse is so serious, especially in an infant this young.”

To date, the child appears to be developing normally, although there are still a number of ongoing medical issues, Walsh said.

Richmond has been ordered to pay $10,000 in restitution to the child’s mother, and the court has the ability to increase that as needed for additional out-of-pocket medical expenses.

While the maximum possible sentence on the charges allowed the judge to send Richmond to prison, he elected to suspend the prison sentence and send him to jail for one year instead.

In three months, Allen will hold a review hearing to determine if Richmond will be allowed work release so he can begin making payments toward his restitution.

“You just don’t understand the severity of what you did,” Allen said. “This is a significant injury to a child, especially a child with no ability whatsoever to defend himself.”