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Jury selection begins for Franklin dad charged in son’s scalding death

Posted by on Nov. 28, 2016 at 12:32 PM
  • 9 Replies

Jury selection begins for Franklin dad charged in son’s scalding death

Updated: Monday, November 28, 2016 @ 10:43 AM
By: Lauren Pack - Staff Writer


Jury selection begins for Franklin dad charged in son’s scalding death
Robert Ritchie, the Franklin father charged in connection with the scalding death of his 4-year-old son, appeared in court at the Warren County Justice Center with his attorneys Frank Schiavone III and Attorney Frank Schiavone IV for a pre-trial hearing, Tuesday, Nov. 15. GREG LYNCH / STAFF


Franklin woman admits guilt in scalding death of 4-year-old stepson

UPDATE @10:15 A.M. MONDAY:

After conference with prosecutors and defense attorneys, jury selection began at 10:15 a.m. in the trial of Robert Ritchie, the Franklin father charged with the involuntary manslaughter and felony endangering children in the scalding death of his 4-year-old son.

Warren County Common Pleas Judge Robert Peeler called for 33 potential jurors. The majority of the courtroom is filled, so most reported to serve their duty.

“Is there anyone who feels like they can not listen to the testimony and look of photos in the death of this child and be fair? …” Peeler asks the potential jurors. “It is going to be tough.”

Three women raised their hands. One woman who told the judge she lost a 6-month-year old was excused by the judge.

INITIAL REPORT:

Jury selection is scheduled to begin today in Warren County Common Pleas Court for a Franklin father charged in the death of his 4-year-old son.

Robert Ritchie, 31, of Bolder Drive, is charged with involuntary manslaughter and felony child endangering for allegedly not seeking medical treatment for his son Austin, who was held in a bathtub of scalding water by his stepmother, Anna Ritchie.

If convicted, Ritchie faces a maximum of 11 years in prison on the involuntary manslaughter charge and five years for child endangering.

Anna Ritchie is expected to testify at the trial. She was sentenced on Sept. 1 to 18 years to life in prison after pleading guilty to murder and other felonies for the death of Austin Cooper in March.

Prosecutors say Robert Ritchie knew about his son’s injuries and did not seek medical treatment. He is being held in the Warren County Jail in lieu of a $250,000 bond with a 10 percent rule.

On March 16 at her Franklin home, Anna Ritchie held the boy in a bathtub of scalding water, with an estimated temperature of 126 to 135 degrees, for about 25 minutes. When she pulled him out of the water, skin from Austin’s legs was in the bath water and the tops of his feet were bleeding, according to prosecutors.

Anna Ritchie, 25, put the child to bed, and he was found dead the next morning by Robert Ritchie.

Robert Ritchie knew the child had been burned through cell phone contact with his wife, according to court documents.

Warren County Prosecutor David Fornshell said after learning his son was burned, Robert did not “set eyes on the child until 15 hours later when he was found deceased.”

Prosecutors showed gut-wrenching autopsy photos of the boy and the injuries he suffered during Anna Ritchie’s sentencing. Some of those photos will likely be shown to the jury in the Robert Ritchie trial.
by on Nov. 28, 2016 at 12:32 PM
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Replies (1-9):
quinnsmom715
by Ruby Member on Nov. 28, 2016 at 12:38 PM
1 mom liked this

jesus!!if that was my son,the wife woudnt have gone on trial cause i probably would have harmed her for hurting my son.i cant believe he did nothing..

Lunarprancer
by Betsy on Nov. 28, 2016 at 12:39 PM

It's unimaginable.

Quoting quinnsmom715:

jesus!!if that was my son,the wife woudnt have gone on trial cause i probably would have harmed her for hurting my son.i cant believe he did nothing..


quinnsmom715
by Ruby Member on Nov. 28, 2016 at 12:41 PM

so,whats the background..was sm always abusive or what?was there a history with cps?

Danesmommy1
by Grammar Enthusiast on Nov. 28, 2016 at 12:42 PM
Jesus fucking Christ. What is WRONG with people?! This is just unimaginably awful.
corticosteroid
by Sapphire Member on Nov. 28, 2016 at 12:43 PM

I wonder if this man was abused by the woman as well.

Anonymous
by Anonymous 1 on Nov. 28, 2016 at 12:46 PM
He should have to go through what that poor child did. Disgusting.
Lulu-mama
by on Nov. 28, 2016 at 12:49 PM
I'm afraid I'd be sitting in jail awaiting trial for her murder as well. Or on the lamb for killing her. This story breaks my heart.

Quoting quinnsmom715:

jesus!!if that was my son,the wife woudnt have gone on trial cause i probably would have harmed her for hurting my son.i cant believe he did nothing..

ColtsFan1912
by FriendoftheFoot on Nov. 28, 2016 at 12:54 PM
That poor child. :(
Anonymous
by Anonymous 2 on Nov. 28, 2016 at 12:57 PM

May they be beat within an inch of their lives every day in jail.

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