As reported in the Charleston Daily Mail today, Rainest Crawford, 24, of Charleston was convicted after a jury trial of child neglect. The facts of these cases are such that they could easily go both ways. Because who would harm an infant unless it were an accident? But as in other cases, an attempted cover-up or lying sometimes secures the conviction. And in this case, he denied knowing what harmed the infant for the first two days after the injury, and then he came clean claiming that it was an accident. If you accidentally injure a baby, you should be able to tell a physician exactly what happened to the child in order to promote the best possible medical care. And if you don’t, then you deserve a felony conviction of child neglect. These circumstances seem to be playing out in the Caylee Anthony case as well.
The article stated the following:
Prosecutors, however, said the 210-pound former University of Charleston football player intentionally harmed the baby. Their primary evidence was that Crawford was the only one in the room with the baby at the time and he told doctors, the mother and police for two days that he didn’t know how she sustained those injuries.
First of all, what difference does it make that the guy used to play football for the University of Charleston? It’s not like he is famous… Should we label all criminal defendants by what sport they used to play? And why mention that he weighs 210 pounds? When you have an adult up against a baby, it doesn’t really matter what your weight is. Furthermore, 210 pounds is not that large. I am at least thirty pounds heavier and I certainly don’t think my weight should be mentioned in an article about me – unless it specifically is written about my amateur sumo-wrestling hobby.
The article quoted Crawford as stating that:
“I’m sorry,” he said. “It all happened so fast. I don’t want to be a bad parent. She was my first child, and I didn’t have any experience or nothing. I’d never been in that situation before.”
People react differently to situations such as this, and it is certainly possible that it was a genuine accident. Knuckle-dragger former football players such as this guy and myself have to be extremely careful when holding an infant. Do the State’s experts really know for a fact that this was caused by “abuse” and not an accident? As with any expert medical testimony, there are two sides to every opinion. Usually defendants such as this do not have access to adequate expert testimony to present the “other side of the story” to the jury.
Regardless, this is very sad. Infants are completely innocent victims. The article didn’t say what permanent injuries were suffered by the child, but even a slight injury to a baby is a tragedy.
You can read the full article here.
– John H. Bryan, West Virginia Attorney.