Columbus couple accused of beating child appear in court

By Taylor Barnhill  - bio | email

COLUMBUS, GA (WXTX) - The trial of a Columbus couple accused of badly beating a three-month-old child started Monday.

It's a horrific story that no one would want to have happen to their child; a three month old baby girl is thrown in the air, smothered and hit in the head with a hammer.

Monday, the couple charged in the abuse appeared in court.  Jury selection took place in Judge Bobby Peter's courtroom, it's just the first step in what attorneys say is a trial that could easily last all week.

The defendants in the case, Tonia Parker and Michael Escobedo, are charged with aggravated assault, aggravated battery and cruelty to a child.

These charges stem from June 2009 when Tonia Parker's three month old baby girl was taken to the Medical Center suffering from a body rash and a fractured skull.

Evidence also shows the child had been smothered with a pillow, was missing a fingernail, and appeared to have been dropped.

The couple is now facing more than 100 years in prison if convicted.

Attorneys will present their opening arguments to the jury Tuesday morning.

FOX 54 will be following this case closely and updating out website with the latest details.

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