Annapolis man admits harming his baby

Infant was struck, shaken

November 08, 2010|By Andrea F. Siegel, The Baltimore Sun

An Annapolis man pleaded guilty Monday to slapping and shaking his infant son on Good Friday in what Anne Arundel County prosecutors described as frustration over dealing with the crying five-month-old.

Anne Arundel County Circuit Court Judge Paul A. Hackner will impose an 18-month jail term for second-degree child abuse, with the rest of a 15-year sentence suspended when DeJuan Samuel Simms, 26, returns to court next month.

Simms, who lives with the baby's mother and her other child, and has taken parenting classes since he was charged in the spring, will be ordered to serve five years on probation after leaving jail. Sentencing guidelines called for no more than four years of incarceration. Simms is expected to be on work release while serving his jail time.

Simms initially said that Camden fell, but doctors at Children's National Medical Center said that could not have been the case given the brain injuries, prosecutors said. The baby is recovering, but experts will not know if he sustained permanent damage until he is school-age.

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