Jason Duran was sentenced to 14 years in prison Thursday for physically abusing his 9-month-old daughter.
Duran repeatedly struck his baby daughter in the head with his hand.
As a result, the child suffered multiple skull fractures. Duran initially told police that the baby fell down while learning to walk. However, when confronted with medical evidence that such injuries could not result from a simple fall, Duran admitted to detectives that he struck the baby because she would not stop crying.
Duran fathered two children by two different women that were born 10 days apart. At the time of the Assault, Duran was living with his mother and his girlfriend, who was the mother of his other child, a son. At trial, Duran’s girlfriend testified that Duran was a good father to his son. On cross examination, however, the girlfriend admitted that she had seen Duran beat his daughter on several occasions by hitting her in the head and in the stomach as well as throwing her in her crib. She testified that she feared that Duran would kill the baby and that she told him he was in danger of going to jail. She also acknowledged that she told Duran that if he ever struck their son she would leave him.
Duran pled guilty to the charge of Aggravated Assault with a Deadly Weapon. The case proceeded to trial on the issue of punishment before Judge Travis Bryan of the 272nd District Court. The State presented evidence that Duran had been on probation for Assault and Criminal Mischief as a juvenile and that he had also been involved in numerous fights and classroom disruptions in school. The State also showed that Duran’s probations had required him to complete multiple counseling programs to address his issues with anger and violence.
Prosecutor Ryan Calvert, who handled the case for the State, asked for maximum prison time stating that “the most defenseless among us require the greatest degree of protection.” Calvert also stated that if “[Duran] was man enough to make these children he is also man enough to be held accountable for abusing them.”
Duran must serve at least half of his sentence before becoming eligible for parole. The victim in the case is expected to make a full recovery.
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