Minn. man gets 6 years for cracking baby’s ribs

Published 12:28 pm Monday, March 26, 2012

MINNEAPOLIS — A South St. Paul man convicted of squeezing an infant hard enough to crack nearly all the boy’s ribs has been sentenced to more than six years in prison.

Thirty-two-year-old Mark Nelson apologized in court Friday, saying he didn’t mean to do what he did.

Nelson was convicted of felony first-degree assault. Prosecutors say he squeezed the 6-week-old boy last summer in such a fit of anger that the boy suffered 37 rib fractures and lung and liver damage. Nelson acknowledged squeezing until he heard something crack.

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Nelson was sentenced to 74 months.

The boy’s mother was also convicted in connection with the abuse. She pleaded guilty this week to gross misdemeanor child neglect and was ordered to participate in parenting classes.