Friday, January 6, 2012

"I believe this sentence should be the same as murder..."

3-Year-Old Tortured, Starved and Beaten Narrowly Survives Deranged Foster-Mother
Re-printed from a story at WCPO Channel 9 on January 6thth 2012

One of the most shocking cases of Child Abuse in Cincinnati ends with a prison sentence for a mother of 7 children.

In Cincinnati today, a case was tried that even shocked veterans of the court. Judges and court officials that have seen vicious murders and vile rapes were beside themselves as CPD officers and detectives testified to the horrific details of a crime against a 3-year-old child.

Before reaching sentencing, 33-year-old Shanna Mitchell of Winton Hills, a Hamilton County Assistant Prosecutor pulled no punches in her description of this crime.

"She singled this child out and beat the living crap out of her," Ryan Nelson told the judge.

Nelson compared the baby's condition to prisoners in Nazi death camps. Judge Ralph Winkler agreed.

"There's not a single part of her body that isn't broken or scarred or burnt," he said. "I don't know how you could do that to a little baby."

“There are more scars that you can possibly count on her body.”

These included, according to a looming pile of photographic evidence, healed fractures in the girl’s tailbone, fingers, hands, legs, arms and some ribs. She also had numerous cuts and burns, some to her genitalia.

Shanna Mitchell apparently had taken good care of her own six children. But when a mother with a drug addiction asked her to raise her daughter, Mitchell had no such compassion.

Shana Mitchell Aggravated Child Abuse Cincinnati"For some reason she abused this baby beyond anything I've seen before," Judge Winkler said.

The 3-year-old had been beaten and starved. Her genitals had been burned.

"I accept responsibility for what I did," Mitchell told the court.

Then she begged for mercy.

"I'm sorry for what I did," she said.

The judge didn't buy it.

"Do you know now that this baby was close to death?" He asked her. "The health care professionals said that she would have been dead within a week or two."

"I didn't, but I do now," she sobbed.

"...from starvation," the judge added.

"I believe the sentence in this case should be similar to a sentence in a murder case, but slightly less because the child did survive," Judge Winkler said.

Judge Winkler did acknowledge Mitchell had been abused herself as a child, and that her record only had some minor offenses.

He gave Mitchell 14 years in prison. Just one year shy of the minimum sentence for murder.

WCPO Channel 9, Guardian Gets 14 Years For Torturing Child
FOX 19, Ohio Woman Sentenced To 14 Years
Cincinnati Enquirer, Mom Sentenced After Child Nearly Starved