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updated: 4/2/2014 12:53 PM

Bloomingdale father sentenced to four years for squeezing infant

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  • Steven Brewer

      Steven Brewer

 
 

A Bloomingdale father who squeezed his infant son so hard he broke the child's ribs and leg in an effort to make him stop crying, was sentenced Wednesday to four years in prison.

Steven Brewer, 19, of the 200 block of Frisco Street, pleaded guilty Wednesday to aggravated domestic battery. Prosecutors then dropped five remaining charges, including aggravated battery to a child.

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Judge Daniel Guerin said the impaired mental health of Brewer, born with fetal alcohol syndrome and cocaine in his system, played a role in the sentence, agreed upon by the judge, prosecutors and Brewer.

Assistant State's Attorney Mandy Meindl argued that at least once, between May 12 and May 31 2013, Brewer squeezed the 3-month-old boy hard enough to break several ribs and femur because the baby wasn't sleeping.

The injuries were discovered about a week later when the boy's mother took him to the hospital; doctors the injuries were consistent with child abuse.

"He initially told police the baby fell off a futon," Meindl said. "But (Brewer) eventually admitted to squeezing the baby out of frustration due to a lack of sleep."

The defendant had recently moved in with the boy, the boy's mother, and the boy's grandmother when the injuries occurred.

The child is now healthy and in custody of the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services, prosecutors said, because the mother also has mental health issues.

Brewer, who stood shaking in court before Guerin on Wednesday, must turn himself in on May 14. Between now and then, he will be allowed supervised visits with the child.

Brewer must serve 85 percent of the sentence before being eligible for the mandatory four-year parole term that follows. He was also ordered to pay a $200 domestic violence fine.

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