July 24, 2016

Intermittent clouds

Woman gets 5 years in child abuse

MEDINA — Laura Grad was sentenced to five years in prison Thursday on two counts of child endangering related to the abuse of her 41-day-old son by her husband.

Grad, 34, formerly of Montville Township, was found guilty on two counts of child endangering, third-degree felonies, in November.

Common Pleas Judge James L. Kimbler said it was the worst child abuse case that did not result in death he has seen in his 23 years as a judge.

Grad told Kimbler she “let her son down” by not seeking medical treatment for injuries caused by her husband, Kenneth Grad.

“The greatest privilege in my life was becoming a mother,” she said. “I do accept responsibility. I let my son down. He had injuries, and I didn’t get him the care he needed.”

Her son, who was born in May 2008, had 28 fractures in various stages of healing when he was taken from the Grad home. The child’s skull and extremities were fractured.

In September, Kenneth Grad pleaded no contest to the felony charges against him and was found guilty on three counts of second-degree child endangering, two counts of third-degree child endangering and three counts of felonious assault. He has not yet been sentenced.

County Assistant Prosecutor Anne Eisenhower asked Kimbler to send Laura Grad to prison for eight years because she did nothing to help her son.

“She did nothing for 41 days to protect that child from him,” Eisenhower said. “She protected somebody. She protected her husband.”

Defense attorney V. Lee Winchell asked the judge for probation, but Kimbler said Grad would go to prison.

“The issue is not whether your client will go to prison,” he said. “The issue is for how long.”

Kimbler sentenced Grad to two years on one count of child endangering and three years on the other count to be served consecutively.

The child, along with Grad’s two other children, are under the care of a family member, county Prosecutor Dean Holman said.

After six months in prison, Grad is eligible to apply for judicial release, Holman said.

“If she does, we will vehemently oppose that,” he said.

Contact Lisa Hlavinka at (330) 721-4048 or lhlavinka@ohio.net.