A DeKalb man was sentenced to 18 years in prison for beating his 5-month-old son to death, The Atlanta Journal Constitution reports.
Benjamin Edetanlen’s attorney used the bible to justify the horrific beatings that resulted in the infant’s death in 2004.
“Mr. Edetanlen firmly believed in the adage, you know, spare the rod and spoil the child,” defense attorney Ingrid McGaughey said with a straight face.
But prosecutors argued that the abuse based on the archaic bible passage went far beyond normal discipline procedures. The infant died from blunt force trauma, brain injuries and a broken leg, reports the AJC.
Edetanlen used the bible to justify regularly assaulting his 5-month-old son, his 2-year-old daughter and a 1-year-old son. Edetanlen’s wife was charged as an accessory for not doing anything to protect her children.
Edetanlen, who faced murder charges, pleaded guilty to involuntary manslaughter and child cruelty, according to Channel 2.
He was sentenced to 18 years in prison based on a recommendation by assistant District Attorney Dalia Racine. Edetanlen was ordered to stay away from his other 2 children when he is released from prison in 18 years.
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