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Nutting receives one-five years on gross neglect charge

By Staff | Sep 10, 2014

Dewayne A, Nutting, 29, presently incarcerated, pleaded guilty in Tyler County Circuit Court Thursday to gross neglect of a child creating a substantial risk of death.

The plea came through an agreement that allows that his other charges be dismissed. Nutting was charged by the February 2013 grand jury with the felony offense of child abuse resulting in serious injury and another felony offense of malicious assault by kicking the child under the age of 18 in the abdomen with steel toe shoes. He also faced a misdemeanor charge of domestic battery from the same indictment.

Nutting agreed to waive presentation of the gross neglect case to the grand jury and proceed with the plea Thursday.

Judge Mark A. Karl asked him a series of questions and after he was satisfied with the answers he told Nutting to tell the court exactly what he did to make him guilty of the charge in the plea agreement.

Nutting said he was in a relationship with an abusive women and he allowed her to curse his daughter and be abusive to her as well. He said his daughter woke up one night crying and his girlfriend told her to shut up and used some profanity toward her. He asked her to bring his daughter to him and he said she (the daughter) was burning up like she had a fever. He explained that he went to touch her stomach and she screamed with pain. He said she was alright the night before. Nutting said he should have left his girlfriend when she became abusive, instead of waiting. Therefore he said he is guilty for allowing the abuse. The daughter was two years old at the time of the incident.

Prosecutor Luke Furbee said if the case were to proceed to trial he would present as evidence that on Dec. 5, 2013, the child was taken by the defendant to Wetzel County Hospital where he represented the child had been injured in a fall. He said the child had a severe injury to her spleen, which they could not treat at Wetzel County. She was evacuated by air to West Virginia University Hospital. He said emergency workers and doctors at the hospital would testify that the injury to the child suffered was non-accidental and was the result of some trauma to the abdomen.

Later, in interviewing Nutting and his girlfriend, the story began to change and it fell into each one blaming the other. The credibility of the girlfriend and witness statements from Nutting seem to show that she may have been as much at fault as he was, said Furbee. “We believe that Nutting, being the biological father of the child, did know of the acts being done and did nothing to prevent them,” said Furbee.

Judge Karl, per the terms of the agreement, sentenced Nutting to one to five years in the state penitentiary with credit for time served. Nutting was also ordered to pay the cost of his prosecution, including his court appointed attorney. He was then remanded to serve his sentence.