A Greenwood man was sentenced to two years in prison after pleading guilty to a child abuse charge this week at the Greenwood County courthouse.
Circuit Judge Thomas L. Hughston Jr. sentenced Ricky Wade Lecroy, 25, to five years in prison, then suspended the sentence to two years in prison and three years of probation on the charge of unlawful neglect of a child. Lecroy pleaded guilty to the charge with no arrangement with prosecutors regarding the sentence. As part of the guilty plea, charges of manufacturing marijuana, possession of hashish and possession of a schedule IV controlled substance were dismissed. Lecroy will also be required to undergo anger management counseling as a condition of the sentence.
Prosecutors asked the court to hand down a substantial sentence for Lecroy. Lecroy could have received a 10 year prison sentence on the unlawful neglect charge and an additional eight years of prison time for the charges that were dismissed.
According to a Greenwood County incident report, Lecroy was babysitting an 18-month-old child in April 2013 while the child’s mother was at work. When the child woke up, she had significant swelling bruising to the left side of her face, forehead and back of the head. Lecroy told the child’s mother that the child fell in the bath tub. The mother did not believe Lecroy and notified law enforcement. The mother and Lecroy were romantically involved and the mother told investigators she had left Lecroy about four months earlier after he was physically abusive to her, but had recently moved back in with him.
According to the report, the child was then transported to Self Regional Medical Center by Greenwood County EMS. Doctors told investigators that the injuries did not appear to be consistent with the child falling out of a tub. Doctors told investigators the injuries appeared more consistent with an adult grabbing the child’s head and squeezing. The child was admitted to the hospital for observation.