UPDATE: Shelley Richter Trial Begins

5 years 9 months 1 day ago Monday, March 11 2013 Mar 11, 2013 Monday, March 11, 2013 5:59:00 PM CDT March 11, 2013 in News
By: Eric Hilt
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JEFFERSON CITY - The trial for a Cole County woman accused of shaking a seven month old began Monday morning. Shelley Richter is charged with child abuse and endangering the welfare of a child.

Those charges come from an incident in August, 2010. Richter allegedly shook Lane Schaefer while looking after him at her in-home daycare center. Richter said she accidentally dropped Schaefer after tripping over another child at the daycare. 

Jurors heard from Lane Schaefer's parents on Monday, Jessica and Cole Schaefer. Both parents testified about the events leading up to the incident as well as the medical condition of Lane Schaefer.

Lane Schaefer, now three years old, is blind in both eyes and has difficulties walking, eating and sleeping. In its opening statement the prosecution said that during the trial doctors will testify these conditions stem from being shaken, not dropped.

"We came out of the hospital with a newborn again," Jessica Schaefer said during her testimony. 

The prosecution used photographs of Lane Schaefer in the hospital along with video of a physical therapy session to show jurors how Lane was affected. Jessica Schaefer said that Lane has to go to therapy sessions every day of the week, including a special school for visually impaired children in Kansas City. 

Jurors also heard from Lane Schaefer's doctor at Capital Region Medical Center, Dr. Douglas Boudreau. Boudreau testified about Lane's health leading up to the August, 2010 incident. 

Richter faces 20 years for child abuse and up to 15 years for endangering the welfare of a child. 

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