|Penngrove child abuser sentenced 11 years
A Penngrove woman on Feb. 21 was sentenced to a prison term of 11 years for felony child abuse and personally inflicting great bodily injury on a child under the age of 5.
Lyndsay Colula, 21, pled no contest and was found guilty of the charges on Aug. 23, 2012. Judge Gary Medvigy handed down the sentence.
"This helpless infant was injured beyond belief," District Attorney Jill Ravitch said. "The sentence is appropriate for this callous and brutal conduct."
Colula faced a maximum term of 12 years in state prison. Her husband, Jesus, received a 10-year term. Their 2-month-old child was found to have a head injury, seven broken ribs, a broken tibia and compression injuries to her tiny toes.
The child was examined by doctors in Santa Rosa, then transported to Oakland's Children's Hospital. Experts at Children's Hospital rejected the notion these traumatic injuries were the result of an accident, and found Colula's initial explanation wholly inconsistent with the physical evidence. During the course of the investigation, Colula gave repeated, implausible and bizarre explanations for the excruciating injuries to the child. Colula, at one point, even blamed the family dog.
At the Feb. 21 hearing, Colula gave a rambling presentation, blaming marijuana and her husband for what happened to her child. She did not explain the true circumstances under which her child sustained her brutal injuries, yet again shirking responsibility.
Medvigy rejected Colula's excuse for not seeking immediate medical attention for the child's injuries. He stated the child's injuries were "torturous," and Colula had chosen marijuana over the safety of her child.
The baby has been adopted by her maternal grandparents and has recovered from her physical injuries. But Medvigy said she still may suffer long-term effects from exposure to drugs.