El Centro – For nearly 3 hours The Imperial County Supreme Court was in session as both Anthony Sanchez's lawyer and the District Attorney presented their case.
Sanchez, a Former Imperial Irrigation District Board Director, was facing two counts of Child Abuse against him after a neighbor filmed and uploaded a video of him whipping his stepson in his backyard. After Monday's preliminary hearing, he only had one.
Sanchez's attorney, Ryan Childers, pleaded to the judge that count 2 of the charges should be dropped because there was not enough proof that Sanchez was trying to "cause bodily harm or death", as the charge is described. In the video, it shows Sanchez aiming his belt at his stepson's buttocks.
The judge agreed and dropped the charge, leaving Sanchez with one charge. If found guilty of count 1, he faces up to 6 years in jail.
"My client is relieved that the more serious charge was dismissed today. I think that that was appropriate", Childers said. "it is rare to have charges dismissed at a preliminary hearing like this."
Both the deputy on duty and the investigator on the case were called to the witness stand to speak and answer questions by both attorneys.
An attempt to minimize count 1 to a misdemeanor was made by Childers but the judge rejected the idea as there is evidence in the video that Sanchez was inflicting pain towards his stepson.
Sanchez is due back in court on August 15.
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