WSMH FOX 66 on Facebook WSMH FOX 66 Twitter WSMH FOX 66 RSS Feed WSMH FOX 66 Mailing List
 

FOX 66 News at Ten

WSMH FOX 66 :: News - News at Ten - Dad gets 5 years in prison for starving girl
Dad gets 5 years in prison for starving girl

MADISON,
Wis. — A Wisconsin father convicted of abuse for starving his teenage
daughter down to 68 pounds was sentenced Wednesday to five years in
prison.

Before being sentenced by Dane County Circuit Judge Julie
Genovese, the 42-year-old man read a statement insisting his daughter
suffered from severe emotional and behavioral problems that he couldn’t
handle, that his job as a trucker kept him away from home and that he
didn’t notice how thin she had become.

“There was no master plan
against my daughter,” the man said, his voice breaking at times. “I was
bailing water from a sinking boat with my bare hands.”

The case
came to light in February 2012 when the girl, then 15, ran away from her
family’s Madison home and was picked up by a passing motorist. The girl
told investigators she had spent most of the previous five years
confined to the home’s basement and was denied food.

Genovese
said it was clear the girl had problems and that everyone who
encountered her failed her. But, she told the father, “it’s your turn to
accept your part in this.”

“What I think you did was put your
head in the sand. It’s your job as a dad to see it and you didn’t.
Really, the buck stops with you,” the judge said.

The girl also
told investigators that her stepmother beat her, her stepbrother
repeatedly forced her to perform oral sex on him and she was forced to
eat her feces and drink her own urine.

“They made me feel like I
was dehumanized a lot,” the girl said in a letter to Genovese. “It’s all
thanks to my stupid dad and stepmom for not giving me an education and
keeping me locked up for most of my life and making me feel like I was
in a scary spot in my life.”

The Associated Press generally
doesn’t name potential sexual assault victims and isn’t naming anyone in
the family to avoid identifying the girl.

Genovese sentenced the
stepmother to five years in prison this summer after the woman pleaded
no contest to reckless endangerment and causing mental harm to a child.
The stepbrother is set to stand trial on sexual assault charges next
month.

The father went through two trials. Jurors in March
deadlocked on some charges, leading to a second proceeding in November.
In all, he was convicted of child neglect, child abuse, reckless
endangerment and causing mental harm to a child, all felonies. He was
acquitted of false imprisonment and misdemeanor neglect.

During
his November trial, the man testified he believed the girl’s stepfather
sexually assaulted her in Texas. After the father brought the girl to
live with him in Wisconsin, she refused to eat and threatened to kill
the family in their sleep, he said.

A psychologist suggested the
girl live on a different level than the rest of the family, he
testified, but he denied locking her in the basement. Social workers
made several visits to the home, but he couldn’t follow up on her care
because he was always on the road. He said social workers should have
removed her from the home.

The man had faced up to 28 years in
prison going into Wednesday’s sentencing. District Attorney Ismael
Ozanne asked Genovese to give the man 10 years behind bars, saying he
and his wife kept the girl isolated because they didn’t want her to tell
anyone she was being abused.

“The course of conduct would have
ended in (the girl’s) death but for her courage to run away,” Ozanne
said. Asked after the sentencing if he agreed with five years, he simply
said he respected Genovese’s decision.

The man’s attorney, Jessa
Nicholson, countered he deserved probation. He already has lost his
family and his job, his wife is in prison and his reputation has been
destroyed, she said.

“Apparently we are still a society that favors punishment,” she told reporters after the hearing.

Genovese said the man deserved the same sentence as his wife. Together they stole five years of the girl’s life, the judge said.

Copyright
2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not
be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.




Dad gets 5 years in prison for starving girl

Friday, January 31 2014, 10:24 AM EST

National News Headlines

Investigators using cell phone records to track movements of Indiana serial killing suspect
Investigators are using the cellphone records of an Indiana man already charged in the slayings of two women to pinpoint his movements after he told police he liked to check on the status of bodies he'd previously stashed after a fresh kill, authorities said.

Police use technology to track movements of suspect in Indiana killings as probe widens
Investigators are using the cellphone records of an Indiana man already charged in the slayings of two women to pinpoint his movements after he told police he liked to check on the status of bodies he'd previously stashed after a fresh kill, authorities said.

Inmate who escaped from Chicago federal lockup sentenced to 36-year term for bank robberies
A bank robber who escaped from Chicago's high-rise Metropolitan Correctional Center has been sentenced to 36 years in prison.

AP NewsBreak: California prisons to end policy that segregated inmates by race after riots
California prison officials have agreed to end a policy that segregated inmates based on their race after a riot.

National Park Service: 5 western parks vandalized, incidents under investigation at 5 more
The National Park Service says vandalism has been found within five western national parks and officials are investigating vandalism reports at five other parks.

Conflict with Oregon city leaves residents without access to fully-built $1M public library
A northern Oregon city is being forced to use a van as its sole library after a blueprint mix-up shut down the new $1.2 million public library building.

Romanian princess gets probation for role in cockfighting business in Oregon
A Romanian princess who helped run a cockfighting enterprise in Oregon has been sentenced to three years of probation and won't have to go to prison.

How academic scandal at University of North Carolina worked to help athletes, other students
The academic scandal at the University of North Carolina unfolded over nearly two decades and involved about 3,100 students, nearly half of them athletes, according to a report released Wednesday by former U.S. Justice Department official Kenneth Wainstein.

Security hiked at Tomb of Unknowns after Canada shooting, although FBI says no known threats
The military increased security Wednesday at the Tomb of the Unknowns at Arlington National Cemetery after fatal shootings at a Canadian war memorial and Parliament, even though the FBI and the Homeland Security Department said there was no specific threat against the U.S.

Denver teacher fired after students hurt in botched lab experiment is charged with misdemeanor
A Denver school chemistry teacher who was fired after four students were burned in a science experiment gone wrong now faces a criminal charge.

News at Ten Stories

Advertise with us!
IE6 Float Fix