Child punishment charges could be dismissed

Published 10:42am Thursday, June 13, 2013

The second woman accused in a September 2012 child punishment case — in which a 9-year-old was forced to hold milk jugs for hours — may have her charges dismissed.

A judge continued Jacqueline Glenda Richardson’s case for dismissal Tuesday in Mower County Court. If Richardson, 49, of Austin, has no violations after one year of court supervision, her two gross misdemeanor charges for malicious punishment of a child will be dismissed.

In the same case, Shavon Melisa Blake, 29, of Austin, was convicted of gross misdemeanor malicious punishment of a child and sentenced to one year of supervised probation and fined $300. A charge for misdemeanor domestic assault was dismissed.

According to the court complaint, a local teacher told authorities a student was being abused at home, and two parents reported the child was abused, as well. The court complaint alleged Blake punched the child in the face and in the back several times, according to the victim. The police report stated the child mentioned frequently having to carry milk jugs around the house, from 2 p.m. until 11 p.m. or 1 a.m., and the jug was sometimes filled with rotten milk or pop can tops. At times, the child reportedly would have to kneel on the floor and keep two milk jugs in the air. The victim told police it hurt to hold the jugs for so long, and the child would lose feeling in the arms.

The child mentioned being struck with a belt, spoons or a stick by Blake, Richardson or Richardson’s boyfriend as punishment. Police photographed a bruise on the victim’s leg, which the victim said was from being hit.

Police interviewed the child’s 8-year-old relative, who also mentioned carrying milk jugs as punishment. The 8-year-old told police Richardson struck with a stick if the 8-year-old dropped the jugs or the bottle, and that the child preferred being punished with the stick as “the stick is easier than the bottles,” according to the police report.

Police arrested Blake on Sept. 7, 2012. Blake reportedly told police the children were punished by carrying the milk jugs whenever they were at Richardson’s home, and injuries were from bug bites and falling down. Richardson reportedly told police they don’t want to hit the children, so they use the bottles and jugs. Both Richardson and Blake told police the children held the containers for about 30 minutes, but the child’s grandmother told police the children held the containers for two hours, according to the report.


—Trey Mewes contributed to this report.

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