Friday, September 28, 2001

Man gets house arrest, probation for injuring son

He admitted rough treatment of infant

By Janice Morse
The Cincinnati Enquirer

        HAMILTON — A city paramedic who pleaded guilty to accidentally injuring his infant son has been sentenced to 30 days of house arrest and up to three years of probation.

        Jon Cook, 37, appeared Thursday before Butler County Common Pleas Judge Michael J. Sage for sentencing on two misdemeanor child-endangering charges.

        If Mr. Cook fails to follow the conditions of his probation, he could go to jail for six months, a sentence the judge suspended.

        The judge also fined Mr. Cook $500 and ordered him to complete 50 hours of community service.

        “You have accepted responsibility for what happened to this child,” Judge Sage said.

        Mr. Cook had faced up to six months in prison and a $1,000 fine on each count.

        In explaining his decision, the judge said Mr. Cook had led “a rather exemplary life” until he was accused of hurting his son.

        The child, born in January 2000, suffered a broken finger, a broken rib and some bleeding inside his head between February and April 2000. Mr. Cook has told authorities the injuries could have happened during unintentional rough handling. The injuries were said to have caused no apparent permanent damage.

        Judge Sage said a psychological evaluation helped convince him that Mr. Cook did not intend to hurt the child. However, the judge cautioned Mr. Cook to learn from the situation and not let anything like it happen again.

        Assistant Prosecutor Steve Tolbert and defense attorney Ronald Ruppert both said the judge's decision was well-reasoned.

        “I hope it all works out for the Cook family,” Mr. Tolbert said. “We wish them the best.”


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