Prison for Pa. Step Mom of Brain-Damaged Boy

A central Pennsylvania woman convicted of abuse that prosecutors said left her 4-year-old stepson with a traumatic brain injury has been sentenced to nine to 20 years in prison.

The (Chambersburg) Public Opinion reports that 29-year-old Michele Hunter of Chambersburg was sentenced Wednesday in Franklin County Court.

She was convicted of aggravated assault, child endangerment and conspiracy in 2011 injuries to Billy Hunter, who now requires constant care.

Hunter tearfully testified that she was ashamed of her conduct. She denied that she was the cause of the injury but said she should have immediately sought medical care.

She also said she planned to appeal the verdict. Judge Carl Van Horn said he agreed with investigators that she seemed “unaware of how truly horrific” her actions had been.

Billy’s adoptive mother Kim Travis told the paper that she wish the punishment was harsher.

"It should be more," Travis said following the hearing. "But we got the max that we could give her and that's the best that we could do, so I'm thrilled we could get that."

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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