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Weatherly man faces child abuse charges

Published December 09. 2013 05:00PM

A Weatherly man, charged by borough police with neglect of his 8-month-old son, waived all charges to the county court last week.

Michael S. Pringle, 30, appeared before District Judge Joseph Homanko, of Weatherly, for a preliminary hearing on charges of endangering the welfare of children, simple assault, recklessly endangering another person, and harassment. He waived his right to a hearing and had all the charges certified to court.

Weatherly police charged Pringle on Nov. 21 after his son was found with bruising and evidence of not being properly cared for.

According to the affidavit of probable cause, on Nov. 17 police were contacted by personnel of the Hazleton General Hospital in reference to possible child abuse. A nurse at the hospital told police a child was brought to the emergency room with marks around his neck, arms, feet, and his head. It also appeared the child had been neglected as if he were left in a dirty diaper for a long period of time.

Through the course of the investigation by police officer Michael A. Eyer, Pringle was interviewed at the police station.

The arrest report states that Pringle admitted what he called "partial neglect" of the child. The affidavit states that Pringle admitted falling asleep several times while the child was in his care, one time he left the child asleep on an adult bed and that the child rolled off and fell about three feet to the ground. The report states that Pringle admitted that the bruising and red marks found on the child may have come from him "roughhousing" a little hard with the child.

Pringle also told police he threw the child across a bed into the corner of the wall and the headboard. Pringle said a pillow and a blanket was in the corner of the bed where the child landed. The defendant couldn't say if any of the bruises found on the boy were from him throwing him, the police report states.

Pringle also admitted to smoking marijuana around the child. He told officers he would take the child for a walk in the stroller around town he would smoke marijuana joint. He also admitted to one incident when the child dropped his pacifier he was smoking a joint. He said he got down next to the child within a foot or so and put the pacifier back into the child's mouth. Pringle told police he believes that the joint may have been close enough to the child for him to inhale it.

Police also said Lancaster County Children & Youth had Pringle on supervised visitation with the child until August because he tested positive for narcotic use while caring for the child after he was born.

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