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Archive for Monday, December 6, 2010

Family of defendant: Baby’s broken arm was an accident

December 6, 2010, 6:03 p.m. Updated December 6, 2010, 6:12 p.m.

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Douglas County prosecutors Monday filed a charge of child abuse against a 32-year-old Lawrence man after his 5-month-old daughter broke her arm last week.

Douglas County prosecutors filed a charge of child abuse against Curtis J. Johnson, 32, of Lawrence, after his 5-month-old daughter suffered a broken arm.

Douglas County prosecutors filed a charge of child abuse against Curtis J. Johnson, 32, of Lawrence, after his 5-month-old daughter suffered a broken arm.

But family members of Curtis J. Johnson on Monday said they believed the girl’s injuries were an accident and asked the public to withhold judgment.

“I know he wouldn’t do anything like that on purpose. He plays with (his daughters) like boys,” said Rebecca Wolfe, Johnson’s mother who lives in Eudora.

But police and prosecutors have accused Johnson of abusing the girl after she was taken to a doctor’s office last week with bone fractures. A judge has ordered Johnson — if he posts his $20,000 bond — to not be within five blocks of the girl or the family’s home in south-central Lawrence.

Douglas County District Attorney Charles Branson charged Johnson with one count of felony child abuse or an alternate count of aggravated battery accusing him of grabbing the child last week in a manner that caused the fractures.

Branson said the filing of the charges excluded that the incident was "a simple accident."

Lawrence police said the girl was taken to Lawrence Memorial Hospital and then transferred to Children’s Mercy Hospital in Kansas City, Mo., for treatment of multiple bone fractures. On Monday, Wolfe said the baby, who had two fractures on her arm, has been released from Children’s Mercy.

Wolfe said her son lived at the residence with the child and his girlfriend, the child’s mother. He is separated from his wife, who has two other daughters with Johnson.

The defendant’s wife, Deon Johnson also of Eudora, said her two children told her that their father never was abusive toward them.

“To them, in their eyes, he is still a perfect father,” she said.

She asked the public to withhold judgment until more facts come out in the case.

James George, Douglas County’s pro tem judge, scheduled another hearing for Johnson at 2 p.m. Tuesday with Chief Judge Robert Fairchild. Johnson did not protest the $20,000 bond during his first appearance Monday.

Comments

avetaysmom 4 years ago

“I know he wouldn’t do anything like that on purpose. He plays with (his daughters) like boys,” said Rebecca Wolfe, Johnson’s mother who lives in Eudora~

Seriously? Who plays with any 5-month-old rough anyway? I couldn't see the difference if it was a boy or girl, they are 5 months old!! If he isn't guilty he needs a class in childcare if he thinks playing around rough with a 5 month old is okay!

notanota 4 years ago

That's what I was thinking. The broken arm would be ok if it were a boy? Wha?

missmagoo 4 years ago

At 5 months old babies are what.. rolling over? Usually not crawling, not at all walking.... so it perplexes me what exactly he could've been doing to cause a broken arm if he was "playing rough." Boy, girl.. doesn't matter. At 5 months old, you should be singing, doing pattycakes, and playing with toys. Those things don't cause broken arms.

jehovah_bob 4 years ago

Have you ever played extreme pattycakes?

parrothead8 4 years ago

“Those charges do not contemplate a simple accident,” Branson said.

Contemplate? I do not think that word means what you think it means.

Daniel Kennamore 4 years ago

He means the charges don't even consider the possibility of a simple accident, they filed a felony child abuse and a felony aggravated battery complaint (both of which suggest intent of abuse and carry felony level penalties) so that one or the other will convict him...while they didn't even 'contemplate' a lesser charge like misdemeanor level child endangerment.

Adrienne Sanders 4 years ago

Charges don't contemplate anything. The person/ people who bring the charges do the contemplating.

Daniel Kennamore 4 years ago

Its poor word choice, but it's not as off-base as other suggested.

asbury 4 years ago

You are correct......the word is not used appropriatly in this sentence.

weeslicket 4 years ago

mr. diepenbrock, question: something seems to be missing in this re-telling. "something happened" causing a fracture. very bad. the child was taken to a physician. that's good.

any information on time and disposition?

me_mine43 4 years ago

He is the one that took the child to the hospital immediately. And he stayed untill they made us leave. If he was abusing her do you really think he wouldve have took her and stayed? Hell no! In any case I have ever heard of the abuser ran didnt take the child to the hospital and stay!

bangaranggerg 4 years ago

Oh, so that's the case? I guess it's not like he did it and then pretended everything was okay for a few hours and the mom took the baby when she got home. I still can't say I understand your logic here though.

kernal 4 years ago

It's not that uncommon for child abusers to take their injured child to an ER. They figure that way, no one will look at them as an abuser since they voluntarily brought the child in and have their story ready. Old trick, usually doesn't work.

kernal 4 years ago

Nice try. It's not that uncommon for child abusers to take their children to the ER. They reason if they voluntarily take the child in, they're less likely to be looked at as a possible child abuser. In this person's case, it didn't work.

kernal 4 years ago

Really like the slooooooowwww way LJW is running right now.

lawslady 4 years ago

"Took her and stayed"? Grammar police ..... have fun.

And yes, MOST abusers DO stay close by. Very close by. It's often done to look innocent. But also in order to try to intimidate the victim (who in this case is too young to speak) and those around them - to keep anyone from saying anything that could be used against them. In addition, it is VERY common for those who are abused to side WITH their abuser. Very common. They do not even realize they are being abused, on a conscience level, because they are so used to living that way.

Step back and take a look. How often do most fathers play rough enough with a 5 month old to break bones? Multiple bones.

Christine Anderson 4 years ago

I'll bet he meant "constitute", not contemplate. As for the defendant's family claiming it was an accident-reprocessed bull nutrient!!! The factor that makes the claim of accident ridiculous is "multiple fractures". Betcha they were in various stages of healing, too.

Suppose there were a single fracture. NO, it still would be unnaceptable, but it could have happened if he was playing rough with her. In that case, the charge should be clinical stupidity, as this is a five month old baby! Duh.

me_mine43 4 years ago

once again you ASSUME "they were in the various stages of healing" WRONG!

costello 4 years ago

"Constitute"?

"Those charges do not constitute a simple accident"?

That doesn't make any sense. I think he meant what he said.

And so much for innocent until proven guilty, eh? Branson may despair of trying a case before a jury of people who can't tell the difference between contemplating and constituting, but at least he has the knee-jerk stupidity on his side.

It's sad in this age where anonymous bloggers try and convict defendants - with made up "facts" - that family members have to go to the paper to beg the public to withhold judgment until the actual trial.

kernal 4 years ago

I think that would be a bull elephant.

me_mine43 4 years ago

Are you that ignorant to judge a person by the way they look?

cryineyes 4 years ago

I smell a rat, a 32 year old sick, twisted kind of rat..c'mon mom(s), think about this..if somebody is playing with a 5 month old little girl, 'like she's a boy", THE JUDGEMENT IS QUESTIONABLE AT BEST!!

me_mine43 4 years ago

Noone is saying it is right what has happened. But seriously people all you have to do is sit on here and pass judgement on something you dont know all the facts too? you are so quick to judge, innocent untill proven guilty? My kids love their father he has always been a great father to them. Untill you are in this situation you have no way of understanding where we are coming from. My kids wake up everyday and beg me to help their father, how am I not supposed to be compassionate to them for a man they have never been hurt by?

avetaysmom 4 years ago

It is hard when you read that it said, "he plays with his daughters like boys?, okay, maybe if the "he" in the scenerio was like 12! You cannot play rough with a 5 month old, ever! They either eat, sleep, and try to start rolling over. I don't want to judge, believe me, years ago I got a call from my daughters school because my daughter had a rug burn on her shoulder that stung when she went to gym, so the school called srs on me and I had to go in a room and tell them that the night before we where playing in the living room and I was spinning her around on her back on the carpet, and in turn she got a rug burn I didn't even see, so I know how it feels when some "assume", made me feel horrible, made me feel like I did something wrong. But, also "multiple" fractures? That is some pretty "rough" playing for a 5 month old, come on. If anything comes out of this, I hope he see's that you can't rough play with a baby, period.

grammaddy 4 years ago

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Nikki May 4 years ago

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Amy Heeter 4 years ago

Sorry but it isn't that easy to break a bone. You ask how you can be compassionte for your children? Set up some therapy sessions. There are several options; Bert Nash, Catholic Community Services, Christian Psycological Services. If nothing more it will give you and your children a safe place to discuss the situation and the therapist can help both you and the kids understand the abuse process as well as support you through court phases.

me_mine43 4 years ago

I am compassionate for my children. They are my world! Before this even came out I had already took all the steps to insure my childrens safety and well being. What I said is how am I NOT supposed to be compassionate to them for a man they have never been hurt by. They have never feared or been hurt by him so it is my responsibilty to stand up for them! Everyday breathe I take is for my kids. And I will stand behind him for them!

trinity 4 years ago

methinks some with close ties to this case doth protest wayyyyy too much. and besides-if it raises your ire to be reading negative comments in regard to somebody who carelessly flung/played with an infant, then maybe the best place for you to be is not reading these comments? seriously. the whole playing rough thing just doesn't wash nor does staunch support of somebody who'd break a baby's arm in "play". also may pay careful attention as to being associated with somebody who'd do such a thing, while living with a girlfriend and not yet being divorced? that's just a little weird in anybody's book-or it should be.

bangaranggerg 4 years ago

Pretty much. Yeah.. yeah, I think you nailed it.

imastinker 4 years ago

Who knows what happened! All I know is that there have been several times as a parent something has happened to my kids that I am very glad didn't result in a broken bone or serious injury. Some were my fault.

My two year old snuck up behind me the other day and I stepped on her bare foot with my shoe. It raised a bruise. I'm a big guy. I'm glad she wasn't seriously injured. What if I had stepped on her arm? Would it have broken? Would it have multiple fractures? Would I be the one who can't see their family and whose name and picture is in the papers?

The point is that none of us know what happened here. Let the courts figure it out and stop judging him without all the facts.

me_mine43 4 years ago

Thank you for your understanding! Noone ever wants to believe when something like this happens that it could be an accident. I have spent half my life with him and even my family who does not care for him because of what has happened between us in the past is ready and willing to stand up for him! They know he has never hurt my children nor would he ever. So Thank you once again for not judging our family, this world would be a better place if there were more people like you in it!

jillian carrasco 4 years ago

Imastinker, I just wanna say thank you for that post. All of these people who think they are better than everyone else im sure has demons in their closets as well,as they sit here and judge another.Shame on them. I'm just glad to see another father not so perfect be honest about it.No parent is ever perfect. Matter Fact no one man or woman is perfect,but the Lord Jesus Christ himself.I think these people who are saying horrible things about this family, Needs to go to CHURCH and read the Bible.Maybe they need Jesus in their lives.I know the Good Lord will help this family thru this tough time.

jehovah_bob 4 years ago

That's right, because the bible says it's okay to beat your children.

jillian carrasco 4 years ago

BTW this poor family's dirty laundry has been aired all over every paper, news and Lord knows what all else,But kinda funny there is another child abuse case in Lawrence Ks right now and his story isnt aired.Whats up with that LJworld? A man driving DRUNK with his 2 very young Boys in the car.Pretty sad to think he could have killed them boys,and here a broken arm is like this man done raped, beat and killed this lil baby girl.I am not saying what happened was right, but for anyone of you to comment such hatered"which the BIBLE says thou shall not hate",should really put theirselfs in this family's situation.It could happen to you tomrrow,even today,or even a yr or 5 yrs or 10 yrs from now maybe even your kids could accidentally hurt your grandchildren..... and would you want things like this said about your family? Cmon people let this family try and deal and coupe with this tragedy without all the harsh insults when you dont know the facts,or even for that matter the man "Mr.Johnson" and his WIfe",that you people keep saying is so horrible." that helped my son after my sons father commited suicide in Aug 2001.All I can Say to the Johnsons is I want to thank you for helping me with my son in our time of tragedy,and I will stand behind you in yours.Im so sorry this accident has happeded to your family and people are so harsh.I wish they all knew the greatness you guys have in your hearts.If they did know you they would know this was NOT at all intentional.

hail2oldku 4 years ago

You mean like this? http://www2.ljworld.com/news/2010/nov...

Give up the woe is me bs. If it was an accident, then I sincerely hope that everything gets cleared up for him. If it was abuse, I hope he gets what is coming to him. Either way, I hope the little girl is ok.

jillian carrasco 4 years ago

BTW this poor family's dirty laundry has been aired all over every paper, news and Lord knows what all else,But kinda funny there is another child abuse case in Lawrence Ks right now and his story isnt aired.Whats up with that LJworld? A man driving DRUNK with his 2 very young Boys in the car.Pretty sad to think he could have killed them boys,and here a broken arm is like this man done raped, beat and killed this lil baby girl.I am not saying what happened was right, but for anyone of you to comment such hatered"which the BIBLE says thou shall not hate",should really put theirselfs in this family's situation.It could happen to you tomrrow,even today,or even a yr or 5 yrs or 10 yrs from now maybe even your kids could accidentally hurt your grandchildren..... and would you want things like this said about your family? Cmon people let this family try and deal and coupe with this tragedy without all the harsh insults when you dont know the facts,or even for that matter the man "Mr.Johnson" and his WIfe",that you people keep saying is so horrible." that helped my son after my sons father commited suicide in Aug 2001.All I can Say to the Johnsons is I want to thank you for helping me with my son in our time of tragedy,and I will stand behind you in yours.Im so sorry this accident has happeded to your family and people are so harsh.I wish they all knew the greatness you guys have in your hearts.If they did know you they would know this was NOT at all intentional.

me_mine43 4 years ago

Yes thank you to all that are not juding our family in this situation. Anyone that knows us knows that we have had our problems but they are in the past. He has ALWAYS been a great father to my kids! Some people choose to judge me for believing he wouldnt intentionally do this but untill you are in my shoes you do not know how it is. I spent almost 14 years of my life with him had 2 kids with him and not once in them years was I ever concerned about him being with our children. He has always been good to them! Gave them love and affection. My kids light up when they see their dad. I understand that this is a 5 month old baby and it shouldve have never happened but accidents do happen! What if this was you or your family? What if a man you spent half your life with was accused of doing something on purpose that you feel he wouldnt have done on purpose? What if you seen day in and day out how much he truely loves his children, would you be able to sit back and take everything that you KNOW and HAVE SEEN and just turn your back on him? If so then you obviously dont know the true meaning of love.

bangaranggerg 4 years ago

Define intentional bud? I'm sure he didn't wake up in the morning thinking it would be a good day to break his baby girl's arm, but he was charged with her care while his baby's mama worked, and got so frustrated at a fussy baby he mishandled her in a way physically abusive enough to cause a very serious injury. It's already obvious that this dude isn't capable of being a productive member of society, now it's showing he isn't capable of being any sort of redeemable human being. It's not high and mighty to judge a 32 year old as absolutely worthless as he is when he is unable to manage his temper in the face of the safety of his own newborn child. You need to hold people to a standard higher than "it's only his first time abusing a child."

bangaranggerg 4 years ago

Sorry just upset, venting a little to much, I still can't forgive that behavior though. Just glad I don't know the guy.

me_mine43 4 years ago

Everyones making this out to be like he meant to hurt her. He didnt! He would never purposely hurt a child. I am not trying to say what has happened isnt an unfortunate accident, but noone has said this had anything to do with his "temper". He has always been patient with my children, once again being married to him for 13 years I have a better understanding of his personality than anyone else does. My children love their father and he has ALWAYS been good to them!

me_mine43 4 years ago

All marriages have their ups and downs, as did ours. we had 2 altercations in 13 years of marriage. things often escalate in small towns as was the case with us. however I can honestly say without going into to many details our children were never involved, the cause of, or in any way a part of our marriage disputes.

bangaranggerg 4 years ago

LOL, Totally, it's to bad you're anonymous because we'd nominate you for a Nobel Peace Prize for that revelation. It could basically solve every issue in Africa. You should bring it up at the next Mensa International Forum you're invited to.

Bridgett Wagner 4 years ago

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kernal 4 years ago

"Pictures speak a thousand words." He should have gone with a cartoon character such as WC Fields.

jillian carrasco 4 years ago

To bad we cant see a picture of you so we can judge you by ur looks.

me_mine43 4 years ago

My children are very open and honest with me. I fully believe and trust in my children. And no I am not looking through rose colored glasses I have since moved on I am just going by what I know of him. How I spent many years with him that is what I am going off of, how he is with my kids. I am not trying to say he is perfect all I have been asking is for people not to judge untill everything is said and done. Everyone is looking from the outside in untill you are in this situation you cant know how it feels. as for the son we dont have a son we took in a troubled child and took care of him a few years ago. I am happy with the woman he has chosen to spend his life with she is great with my kids I am thankfull she is the one in my kids lives.

xclusive85 4 years ago

"things often escalate in small towns as was the case with us."

I grew up in a small town. This did not frequently happen there. If I read your comment correctly, then yes, he abused you. More than once. Why do you think then, that he would not abuse a child? You weren't there for him to abuse and neither was the baby's mother.

If I misread your statement, then I apologize

bangaranggerg 4 years ago

I dont' think you misread it, a commenter to the first article mentioned he had two previous charges of assault and battery/ domestic violence and one of them involved assault of a police officer.

me_mine43 4 years ago

I did not mean it was because it happened in a small town, I was referring to how rumors get blown up in a small town.

imastinker 4 years ago

me_mine - I stuck up for him earlier and after reading what all you have written have second thoughts about having done so. You'd keep your mouth shut if you knew what was good for you.

I do acknowledge that accidents happen - but if he did abuse you or the baby, I hope he gets what's coming to him!

me_mine43 4 years ago

the only thing I have put on here is public knowledge.

lawdog 4 years ago

me_mine: I sent you a priv. message.

lawdog 4 years ago

I don't think he is a bad person, I hope everything works out and that officials don't just assume or jump to any conclusions.

jillian carrasco 4 years ago

So agree with that!! I pray daily that Mr Branson realizes he is a good father maybe that Mr Johnson doesnt make the best choices in life but doesnt mean he is a bad person.No one is perfect and accidents do happen..thank you for being understanding:)

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