xml:space="preserve">

An Aberdeen man pleaded guilty last week to first-degree child abuse causing severe physical injury and could spend nearly 14 years in prison.

Branden William Felix, 31, entered the plea in Harford County Circuit Court on May 28.

Advertisement

He was sentenced to 25 years in prison with 10 years suspended by Circuit Judge Angela Eaves. Felix has been in custody since March 7, 2013 and will have the 447 days served counted toward his sentence, according to court records.

Once Felix is released from prison, he will be on five years supervised probation, according to court records.

Felix, of the first block of Norman Avenue in Aberdeen, was initially charged with first- and second-degree child abuse, neglect of a minor and reckless endangerment. In exchange for his guilty plea to first-degree child abuse, the other charges were not prosecuted, according to court records.

The charges against Felix involved serious injuries sustained by his then 4-year-old daughter in November 2012, according to court charging documents from his arrest.

Deputy Harford County State's Attorney Diana A. Brooks, who prosecuted the case, said Monday the girl's mother "is satisfied with the agreement and the outcome."

"The mother was at the sentencing but did not give a victim impact statement; she was very emotional," Brooks said.

"We are satisfied with the agreement," she said, adding: "It's a very sad case."

Brooks said the girl's mother was consulted "on every aspect" of the plea and noted the sentence is "within the guidelines and in line with similar cases."

During his bail review in March 2013, an assistant states attorney said the injuries to Felix's daughter included "bruises, hemorrhages to the eyes" and also noted the girl had been "on life support" and had suffered "brain damage."

The prosecutor said those injuries and other evidence of "healing of skeletal fractures" were inconsistent with claims by Felix the girl "fell off the couch."

According to charging documents, an Aberdeen Police Department officer was dispatched to Felix's home around 7 p.m. on the night of Nov. 16, 2012, after a complaint was received from a nurse at Union Hospital in Elkton, who had observed bruises on the victim, the injuries to her eyes and "some brain damage," the latter based upon a CT scan.

"The nature of the victim's injuries caused the victim to be transferred to University of Maryland Hospital...," the charging documents state. She was placed in the critical care unit at University Hospital, and the investigating officer was told by staff there the girl "was currently sustained by life support apparatus," according to the charging documents.

In follow-up interviews with both parents, the investigating officer was told the girl had fallen off the couch, according to the charging documents. The mother was not home when the girl was injured.

A detective from the Havre de Grace Police Department, who was also involved in the investigation, was told by an attending physician the injuries were "not consistent with a fall but, consistent with shaken baby syndrome," the charging documents stated.

Advertisement

By the time Felix was arrested in March 2013, the girl had recovered enough to have left the hospital; however, Brooks said Monday the girl, who is almost 2 years old, has "ongoing problems."

Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement