NewsChannel 11 Investigates Local Man Charged With Child Abuse Again - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

4/6/09

NewsChannel 11 Investigates Local Man Charged With Child Abuse Again

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Source: Lubbock Co. Sheriff Source: Lubbock Co. Sheriff

A Texas man known to have an abusive history towards children is once again behind bars. Michael Schneider was charged with causing serious bodily injury to a 6-month-old. Back in 2006 Schneider was charged with the same crime, accused of beating a 2-year-old child.

On March 25, 2009, 22-year-old Schneider was cuffed and charged for injuring his girlfriend's 6-month-old son, sending him to intensive care. The couple took the baby to Covenant Medical Center after his mother returned home from work. She found her son badly beaten with external injuries. Her boyfriend, Michael Schneider, who was watching the infant at the time has been charged. His bond set for $250,000 at the Lubbock County Jail. She has not been charged in the case.

It's a very similar story to the one we told you back in 2006. On October 27th, 2006 Schneider and his then girlfriend Kelly Searles were both arrested and charged with child abuse. Pictures taken at the time show the 2-year-old badly beaten. Other pictures of the injuries were too graphic to show in this report.

Bill Searles, the boy's grandfather who now has custody says the tike suffered from nine broken ribs, both arms were broken and cigarette burns were found on the boy's foot and back. "He has made a good recovery however, he has permanent brain damage."

Schneider was then allowed to bond out back in December of 2006. His bond was half a million dollars. "I would never have thought the system would allow him to be out for two and a half years considering the gross abuse done," Bill explains.

"When I got that call about this I was sincere in the fact that I about threw up. My biggest fear was him and anybody like him would have allegations against him of doing the same thing to another innocent child and sure enough, it happened," explains Brian Kingston, District Attorney of Dawson County. Kingston says he doesn't know why Schneider's first case hasn't gone to trail yet, "I don't know. That's not an appropriate answer that's not in my opinion a good answer. There is no good answer. Why he didn't, I don't know."

Kingston's only been in office since January, so we called the former D.A. who says he doesn't remember everything about the case. He does recall the judge pushing the case back several times. "The truth is the people involved in this case deserve to have some closure on this. We are going on three years and in my opinion there's no excuse," says Kingston.

Bill believes the system failed him and it wasn't just the courts that failed. He says Children's Protective Services could have prevented this. He was so concerned with his grandson's safety he contacted CPS just one month before the 2-year-old was hospitalized. CPS even visited the house just days before the child was severely beaten.  "We did everything by the system to help protect these kids in the beginning through CPS," he explained.

Bill believes the children were neglected after finding the home filthy with dirty diapers on the floor, but CPS thought otherwise. "Child safety specialist reviewed the case and determined that CPS had acted appropriately at every step," explains Greg Cunningham of CPS. Cunninghamalso also goes on to explain, "They learn from these situations to do better next time." For now let's hope there's not a next time.

No disciplinary action against any of the CPS case workers involved has ever taken place. As for the first charges Schneider is facing, that trial is set for June 19, 2009. You can count on NewsChannel 11 being there to bring you the latest updates to this case.

NewsChannel 11 Investigates Archives
NewsChannel 11 Investigates Archives
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