Soldier accused of abuse allegedly hurt child because he was upset
The Columbus (Ga.) Ledger-Enquirer
A man accused of abusing a 10-year-old child over the Christmas holidays was upset the child was taking time away from his 4-year-old daughter from a previous relationship, a Columbus police detective testified in Recorder's Court on Friday.
Spc. William C. Robinson, who is assigned to the 3rd Armored Brigade Combat Team, 3rd Infantry Division at Fort Benning, was arrested on post Wednesday after police investigated injuries to the boy at an apartment complex on West Britt David Road. Judge Michael Cielinski ordered Robinson, 27, held on bonds totaling more than $52,400 in the Muscogee County Jail and bound all charges over to Muscogee Superior Court.
Columbus police detective Richard Campbell told the judge the charges stemmed from three separate occasions during the holidays when the child sustained injuries to his left eye, right eye and groin area. The detective presented color photos to the judge of the boy with bruises, swelling around the eyes and black and blue bruising in the groin.
In interviews with the boy's mother, Campbell said the boy was abused because Robinson was upset the child was taking time away from him seeing his 4-year-old daughter from a previous relationship. Robinson is not the father of the boy but met his mother, also a soldier, while the two served in Afghanistan.
Campbell said there were no other witnesses to the charges other than the boy's statement to police. In an interview, Campbell said the boy first said the injuries occurred during horse play but later said Robinson caused the injuries.
The boy said he would be awakened between 1 a.m. and 5 a.m. with punches in his face. While standing, the boy said his legs were spread to the side and he was kicked in the groin area.
Bruises around the eyes were noticed Dec. 29 by the mother and the boy complained of pain in the groin a day later.
When the mother asked about taking the child to the hospital on post, the suspect discouraged her from taking action. "He stated special services would get involved," Campbell said.
The child was treated later at St. Francis Hospital. Authorities are still awaiting reports from the hospital.
Represented by public defender Charles Lykins, Robinson stood silent during the hearing and did not testify.
The boy's mother told the judge the couple lived in Salem, Ala., before moving to the Columbus apartment at the end of October. She had no answer when Lykins asked if she knew why Robinson was upset about the boy.
During the hearing, the boy remained in the back of the courtroom and didn't testify.
Distributed by MCT Information Services