Injured baby results in community control for co-defendants


By Bethany J. Royer-Delong - DarkeCountyMedia.com



GREENVILLE — Co-defendants accused of burning the bottom of a baby’s foot made an appearance in Darke County Common Pleas Court via video conference on Friday.

Leslie A. Miller, 21, and Caleb I. Boberg, 22, both of Greenville, went before Judge Jonathan P. Hein for sentencing on an amended charge of attempted child endangering, a third-degree felony.

According to Darke County Prosecutor Kelly Ormsby, the child, related to Boberg, was provided no medical attention to a burn on the bottom of one foot caused by Miller with what is believed to be a drug-related instrument.

Ormsby cited Miller as the more culpable of the two defendants and asked that a prison term be considered. However, defense attorney David Rohrer representing Miller, stated he wasn’t sure how prison would help in his client’s rehabilitation.

“I believe she needs help with drugs,” said Rohrer, who went on to state that while the injury was not intentional, it was serious enough that medical attention should have been administered early on. “I’m not sure why that wasn’t done.”

A victim advocate in the case explained how the child was dressed in a full-length onesie when the defendants returned the child to the mother during a child exchange.

It wasn’t until changing the child’s diaper that the mother discovered the burn. She, along with her boyfriend, took the child to the Greenville Police Department and then to the hospital.

When asked what consequences Miller should face, the victim advocate suggested prison time, as well as rehabilitation, stating it was devastating to hear the charge was amended, “I don’t know how it would be considered attempted with an injury?”

When asked how the incident transpired, Miller said she was hanging out with the wrong crowd and getting into things she shouldn’t have at the time. When further asked about recent drug use, she admitted to marijuana in both December and January.

Judge Hein, citing the cover-up was worse than the crime, sentenced Miller to community control sanctions up to 60 months with 20 days in jail, 100 hours community service, court costs, and a $500 fine.

“I still don’t know what your motive was to injure the child,” continued Hein. “If necessary, the punishment may get worse.”

Caleb I. Boberg, the fiancé to Miller and father of the child, made an appearance via video conference later that afternoon.

Ormsby explained to the court how Boberg initially covered for Miller, confessing he was the one who burned the child but recanted once he saw the injuries.

A prison term was preferred; however, as Miller was more culpable than Boberg and sentenced to community control, Ormsby voiced a similar recommendation.

Defense attorney Randall Breaden representing Boberg agreed with the prosecution, that his client was less culpable but is guilty of not doing anything in regards to the injuries after discovery. He further cited his client does have substance abuse issues but otherwise has no prior criminal history.

Boberg agreed with what was said, acknowledging the lack of admittance to the injury and failure to take the child to the hospital.

“As soon as you saw the injury, you should have owned it, not lied about it, those are factors demonstrating bad judgment,” said Judge Hein.

Boberg was sentenced to community control sanctions up to 60 months with ten days in jail, a $250 fine, court costs, and 100 hours community service.

Failure to comply could result in up to 12 months in prison with a mandatory three years of post-release control for both defendants in the case.

Also appearing in court via video conference were the following:

*Rocky L. Yoder, 40, of Greenville, for a change of plea on charges of possession of heroin and aggravated possession of fentanyl both fifth-degree felonies. As part of the plea agreement, the second charge was dismissed with sentencing slated for May 29.

*Eugene Woodruff II, 55, of Greenville, for driving under the influence, a fourth-degree felony, and driving under OVI suspension, a first-degree misdemeanor. He was sentenced to 60 months supervision, 70 days in jail with 62 credit, $1350 mandatory fine, court costs, 100 hours community service, and a three-year mandatory license suspension.

*Jesse J. Rhoades, 35, of Winchester, Ind., for attempted tampering with evidence, a fourth-degree felony. He was sentenced up to 60 months of community control, 100 hours of community service, and court costs.

*Austin W. Schwartz, 24, of Piqua, for possession of meth, a fifth-degree felony. He was sentenced up to 60 months of community control supervision, 78 days jail with 78 days credit, court costs, $35 lab fee, and 100 hours community service.

*Nathan A. Sprowl, 43, of Gordon, for receiving stolen property, a fifth-degree felony. He was sentenced to 63 days in jail with 63 credit and court costs.

By Bethany J. Royer-Delong

DarkeCountyMedia.com

Reach reporter Bethany J. Royer-DeLong at 937/548-3330 or email broyer-delong@aimmediamidwest.com. Read more news, features, and sports at DarkeCountyMedia.com.

Reach reporter Bethany J. Royer-DeLong at 937/548-3330 or email broyer-delong@aimmediamidwest.com. Read more news, features, and sports at DarkeCountyMedia.com.