ITHACA, N.Y. — A man pleaded guilty Thursday afternoon to beating a 13-year-old girl with a wooden stick, leaving her with bruises and marks on her body.
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Garry Smith, of the town of Ithaca, accepted a plea deal where he admitted to second-degree assault in exchange for a recommended sentence of six months in jail and five years of probation. He’ll also have to adhere to an order of protection that keeps him away from the victim for eight years and complete a domestic violence rehabilitation program.
In court, Smith said that on July 21, the girl was saying that his brother was acting irrationally. The claims made Smith angry, which is why he said he began hitting the girl with a wooden stick.
“You lost control, would that be fair to say?” Judge John Rowley asked.
Smith agreed with the statement. He said the stick was one he’d previously used to stoke coals in a barbecue pit.
Court records provided a different account, saying the stick was a fence post that Smith allegedly struck the girl with in the past. The records also state that the incident may have happened in a different context, but those claims were not mentioned in court.
Among other differences in court documents, which provided written statements from a witness and the victim, was that Smith also punched the girl in the head or face and threatened to kill her.
Court records show that Smith was originally charged with third-degree assault, endangering the welfare of a child, fourth-degree criminal possession of a weapon, second-degree assault, and third-degree criminal possession of a weapon and third-degree menacing.
He could have faced up to seven years in state prison and three years of post-release supervision if he was found guilty of the charges.
Smith is scheduled to be sentenced on Dec. 22.
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