Child killer gets 30 years
Editor’s note: Some information in this article is graphic. For complete story, see Sunday’s Post Independent.Harley Quint Young was sentenced to 30 years in prison Friday afternoon for the fatal beating of his four-and-a-half-month-old daughter. Ninth District Court Judge Peter Craven handed down the sentence, the result of a plea agreement crafted after Young pleaded guilty to a reduced charge of felony child abuse.In pronouncing sentence Craven quoted Abraham Lincoln, A society is judged not by how it treats its greatest but how it treats its least … Its difficult to conceive how that protection was ripped away and replaced with violence against a child.In harrowing detail, Gretchen Larson, deputy district attorney, described the night Alecsandria Young-Schmid died. On Feb. 17, 2002, Young came home from his job at Peppo Nino restaurant in Glenwood Springs.Hed had a bad day. He was in a bad mood, Larson said. His wife Micah was asleep and his daughter was in a baby swing and was crying.He jerked her violently out of her swing and slammed her two times against the ground. She cried some more, and he took his hand and covered her mouth and nose and suffocated her for 20 to 30 seconds. Then realizing what he was doing, he jerked his hand away … He wrapped her in a blanket and put her in her crib and left her there to die.When he came in the bedroom, he confessed, his wife woke up and asked what noise the baby had made. Young said it gurgled or snored. In reality, the baby was struggling for breath.He just left her there to die, Larson said.The next morning, he found the baby dead in her crib. Mesa County Coroner Dr. Robert Kurtzman performed an autopsy on Alecsandria on Feb. 18 and found evidence of violent head trauma, sometimes characterized as shaken baby syndrome, Larson said.Young, 22, and wife Micah Marie Schmid-Young, 21, lived in Garfield County between Glenwood Springs and Carbondale near the CMC turnoff when the killing took place.After a two-year investigation by then-District Attorney Mac Myers and Larson, the couple were arrested in Tucumcari, N.M. on Mar. 29, 2004 and extradited back to Garfield County in April.Schmid-Young is charged with child abuse resulting in serious bodily injury, negligently.As part of the plea bargain, Young pleaded guilty to a reduced charge of child abuse resulting in serious bodily injury, knowingly or recklessly, which carries a presumptive sentence of 24 to 33 years.Young gave a video-taped confession to a sheriffs detective, part of which was shown in court Friday. In the segment, Young demonstrated with a doll how he beat his daughter against the floor.I just kind of lost it, he said.Larson also told the court that Young was not pleased with his plea agreement.He said it sucked, Larson said. His comment was, Theres no justice in this. Theyre just hurting the kids. Were one of the better American families. We dont beat our kids and we dont do drugs in front of them.He thinks hes the victim of injustice, Craven said. He does not understand the gravity of his own (actions).
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