Man sen­tenced for beat­ing 4-year-old boy

The Washington Post Sunday - - COMMUTER - BY KEITH L. ALEXAN­DER keith.alexan­der@wash­post.com

A District man was sen­tenced Fri­day to more than six years in prison for abus­ing and beat­ing a 4-year-old boy with drum­sticks while he cared for the child for about a month last sum­mer.

In sen­tenc­ing 20-year-old Ti­mothy Allen to six years and eight months in prison for abus­ing the boy, D.C. Su­pe­rior Court Judge Lynn Lei­bovitz called Allen’s ac­tions “dev­as­tat­ingly cruel” and “in­hu­mane.”

Allen’s co-de­fen­dant, his mother, Suzette Ni­cole Allen, 45, is sched­uled to be sen­tenced Sept. 15.

Both pleaded guilty in April to first-de­gree cru­elty to chil­dren. Ti­mothy Allen has been in D.C. jail since his ar­rest.

Prose­cu­tors said the boy’s mother asked the Al­lens, whom she knew, to care for her young son and his older brother last sum­mer. Prose­cu­tors said that be­gin­ning July 15 and con­tin­u­ing for sev­eral weeks, the Al­lens beat the child with their hands and with drum­sticks, caus­ing the boy’s health to de­te­ri­o­rate so badly that he had trou­ble walk­ing and was lethar­gic. Prose­cu­tors would not iden­tify the boy but in court used his nick­name, “Bat­man.”

The Al­lens beat the boy for uri­nat­ing in bed, not eat­ing broc­coli, be­ing rude — and for “be­ing a 4-year-old boy,” the prose­cu­tors said.

In text mes­sages be­tween the Al­lens pre­sented by prose­cu­tors, they wrote to each other: “We come up with a new pun­ish­ment.”

The boy’s mother picked up her son from the Allen fam­ily a month later. She no­ticed the in­juries and rushed her son to Chil­dren’s Na­tional Med­i­cal Cen­ter in D.C. Doc­tors said the boy had suf­fered mul­ti­ple brain con­tu­sions; two lac­er­a­tions to his liver; a hem­or­rhage in his ab­dom­i­nal cav­ity; two rib frac­tures; a frac­tured fin­ger; a miss­ing tooth; scars to his spine, ab­domen, chest and in­ner thighs; and in­juries to his fore­head, eye, nose, jaw and chest. The boy was hos­pi­tal­ized for 17 days.

In court, Ti­mothy Allen’s at­tor­ney asked Lei­bovitz for le­niency, say­ing Allen was beaten him­self as a child. Allen, stand­ing next to his at­tor­ney, apol­o­gized for his ac­tions.

Lei­bovitz also placed Allen on three years of su­per­vised re­lease, dur­ing which he is not al­lowed con­tact with chil­dren.

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