CLEARFIELD – A former Clearfield woman accused of beating her children with a belt was sentenced Monday during sentencing court.
The charges stem from incidents at the home of Kyle Victor Couturiaux, 36, and April Sue Lynn Eddy, 26, now of Morrisdale, who witnesses say struck the children and paid little attention to the youngest of the five.
Prior to Eddy’s sentencing on Monday, her attorney Roan J. Confer Jr., told Judge Paul Cherry that she has been working to better herself since her arrest.
She has completed nurturing programs and drug/alcohol counseling. She is holding down two jobs to help support her children who are in foster care, and also is performing community service, he said.
Confer noted that during her time on bail, she has had 45 negative drug tests.
Cherry also commended her for staying clean because some of the drug tests were unannounced.
Eddy addressed the court saying she is “very sorry for my actions.” She stated she was getting mental health treatment and as she cried said: “I love all of my children.” She asked they be able to see their mother.
Cherry sentenced her to serve three months to one year in the county jail with three years consecutive probation on each of three felony counts of endangering the welfare of a child, which will run concurrently.
She is not to have contact with her children, unless it is approved by Children, Youth and Family services.
Deputy District Attorney Trudy Lumadue had argued for a minimum one-year sentence for Eddy’s open plea.
Lumadue noted that Couturiaux was not the primary actor in this case and is not the father of the children involved. In December, Couturiaux was sentenced to 21 months to nine years in state prison by Cherry for the same charges.
According to the affidavit, Eddy struck her two-year-old son repeatedly with a belt in January 2022 leaving bruising, hit her six-year-old son with a belt at least four times in August 2021, struck her two-year-old with an open hand and shoved baby wipes into his mouth in September 2021.
They also allegedly slapped the children for various things such as being too slow getting ready for school.
An investigation into the abuse began after someone reported to police that while they were at their residence on Jan. 16, 2022, she noticed one of the children had something on their face, which she wiped off to discover bruises.
Another witness had reportedly taken video of injuries to one child’s back, face and upper back shoulder.
Reportedly the couple was often in physical confrontations with each other.
The witnesses told police about specific incidents of violence they had witnessed and occasions when they had noticed the five children with injuries.
One of them said the baby was usually left in the crib in her room with the door closed. Another child was left in a car seat on their bed. They “had little interaction with the two youngest children,” he said.
It was also reported that the pair was abusing drugs in front of the children.
Another witness that was around the couple in previous years recalled a time she had to save an infant who was in the bathtub with only another young child around.
She said the child was under the water and “turning blue.” Once removed from the water, he was revived.
There were multiple accounts of the young children’s diapers not being changed, and neighbors stated they often heard fighting in the home. A former neighbor had actually reported the couple on a few occasions when they appeared to be neglecting the kids, according to the report.
When the children were questioned after being removed from the home, one of them said that he did not want to live with Eddy and Couturiaux “because they smack me” and if he tells them to stop “they don’t stop.”