Okay, I’m going to run a sentence by you: A father has been sentenced to forty-six months in prison for using a stun gun on his eighteen month old child.
Yes, you read that correctly. No, it is not some twisted joke of mine. Although it might have been some twisted joke of his. The Associated Press reports:
A former Albany man has been sentenced to 46 months in prison for using a high-voltage stun gun on his 18-month-old son.
Rian Wittman was arrested in February and agreed to a plea bargain last year. The sentence was imposed Friday.
Prosecutor Reed Dinsmore said the stun gun delivered 30,000 volts during testing.
“This is a case of a father torturing his 18-month-old son,” prosecutor Reed Dinsmore said. “Why? We can’t tell.”
He said it’s not yet known whether the child will suffer long-term nerve or neurological damage.
The prosecution said the child’s mother saw marks on the boy in January 2007 and, thinking it was a rash, wanted to take him to a doctor.
But Wittman talked her out of it, Dinsmore said.
“He described to her that he used the stun gun to play peekaboo with the child,” Dinsmore said. “The mother did not report the incident, and that was a mistake on her part.”
Peekaboo? But … but …. I mean, come on. That doesn’t even begin to make sense.
Nonetheless, it took a second incident before the mother removed the child to her sister’s home and contacted the police. Now, if you’ve ever lived in Oregon, perhaps you will understand why I’m not surprised that Mr. Wittman and his attorney are arguing that the mother caused the injuries. Which is, of course, the best reason under the sun to plead out.
(With thanks, I think, to Mr. Savage.)