Trial Begins for Accused Child Abuser
JEFFERSON CITY - The jury trial for the Taos woman charged with child abuse starts Monday at the Cole County Courthouse. Prosecutors say Shelly Richter caused injuries to then seven month old Lane Schaefer. Cole County Prosecuting Attorney Mark Richardson says it appears as if she shook the young boy.
The charges came about after a 911 call from Richter's house in August of 2010.
Richter, who worked as a daycare assistant from home, claims she was back pedaling with Schaefer in her arms when she tripped over another child she was watching. Court documents say that caused Richter to drop Schaefer onto a concrete floor. Schaefer ended up surviving the incident but had to be taken to University Hospital.
After looking at Schaefer though, doctors disagree with Richter's claims. They say the brain injuries and the bleeding in one of Schaefer's eyes point to Richter shaking the boy instead.