Father accused of punching son gets 12-year suspended sentence
A father accused of punching his 8-year-old son in the stomach so hard he caused internal bleeding, pleaded guilty Monday to child abuse and attempted child abuse as part of a deal that calls for him to receive probation from a suspended 12-year prison sentence.
State District Judge T. Glenn Ellington commended Darryl Blakey, saying that according to the state Children Youth and Families Department, his performance has been “stellar” since the incident nearly three years ago.
“I have never seen, in the 30 years I’ve been practicing law, a case that started as this one did that has turned around diametrically to the point that they are considering returning your minor child back to your custody,” the judge said when accepting the plea.
Blakey, 43, was arrested in September 2016 after his son arrived at his Pojoaque elementary school bruised and complaining of stomach pains and unable to get off the school bus, according to statement of probable cause in the case.
The boy told a school nurse his father had punched him in the stomach that morning and continued beating him because he didn’t do his homework, according to the statement.
The boy was later found to have internal bleeding from cuts on his liver and spleen.
The statement said Blakey admitted to going “too far” and “losing control” after becoming upset with his son for getting in trouble at school. He told deputies he wasn’t under the influence of alcohol or drugs at the time but may have “blacked out” and “lost control,” striking his son about a dozen times in the chest, back and buttocks.
Asked by the judge why the state had agreed to the plea, Assistant District Attorney Martin Maxwell said the case had been “very difficult” for him and defense attorney Sam P. Ruyle, noting that they’d each inherited it after numerous other attorneys had worked on it. Maxwell said he was the fourth prosecutor on the case and Ruyle was the fifth defense attorney.
But, Maxwell said, during pretrial interviews “all the witnesses were in favor of Mr. Blakey, and after that we came to the conclusion that Mr. Blakey has had enough tragedy in his life, and his kids have had enough tragedy.”
Maxwell told the court Blakey and his sons moved to Santa Fe from Philadelphia to start over after the children’s mother died.
“He moved here to have a better life,” Maxwell said. “He hit is child … but since then it appears he has become a better person. He doesn’t have any other family here and neither do his children.”
Blakey will not initially be incarcerated under the terms of his plea. But he could be ordered to serve whatever remains of his 12-year suspended sentence if he violates the terms of his probation, which include completing domestic violence intervention and parenting programs.