Plea Deal for First Degree Child Abuse and Torture?
27-year-old Nicholas Racine, the man accused of seriously harming a 3-month-old infant, has a plea deal in the works. His trial is scheduled for next month, but if his attorney and the prosecutor can come up with an agreement that works for everyone, the trial won’t be necessary.
Racine appeared in Marquette County Circuit Court before Judge Jennifer Mazzuchi recently, for his pretrial hearing. While in court, Prosecutor Matt Wiese explained to the judge that a plea deal is being discussed, but so far nothing has been agreed upon.
Racine, a resident of West Branch Township, has been charged with first degree child abuse and torture. According to the Marquette County Prosecutor’s Office, he is accused of badly injuring a 3-month-old baby.
According to police records, the infant was treated at Motts Children’s Hospital at the University of Michigan for severe injuries. Hospital records show that the baby suffered hemorrhages, head trauma, and multiple rib fractures, along with bruised eyes and a possible bite mark on the arm. According to one of the doctors treating the infant, the abuse took place on at least three separate occasions, possibly more.
Following the baby’s admission into hospital, the Michigan State Police began an investigation into what appeared to be a severe case of child abuse. Racine was arrested on June 25th, following the MSP investigation, at his home in West Branch Township. He was lodged in the Marquette County Jail, and arraigned the next day on two felony charges.
The baby has since been released from hospital, and is now in the care of family members. No information has been released regarding how the infant’s mother plays into this story, or how Racine allegedly had access to the baby.
Under Michigan law, both first degree child abuse and torture are felonies punishable by up to life in prison. If convicted of first degree child abuse and torture, Racine is likely facing a very long time behind bars. If Racine’s attorney and the prosecutor’s office are unable to come to an agreement, Racine’s trial is set to begin on December 1st.