Child beating suspect Abo will go to trial
A 12-member jury is scheduled to hear evidence and arguments in the case over a five-day period, starting at 9 a.m. Tuesday, Sept. 16, with Judge John Collins scheduled to preside.
The District Attorney’s Office will rely on “enhancement facts” in prosecuting the case. That’s designed to justify a longer sentence on conviction.
Abo, 34, has been indicted by a grand jury on two counts each of first-degree assault and first-degree criminal mistreatment. Assault is a Class A felony carrying a lengthy mandatory-minimum prison sentence under Measure 11; criminal mistreatment is a Class C felony.
The alleged acts would normally fall under the sheriff’s office jurisdiction, but due to Abo’s previous county employment, the case was handled by the McMinnville police.
Abo allegedly beat his live-in girlfriend’s 4-year-old son on multiple occasions at his Sheridan residence, inflicting critical, life-threatening injuries. The toddler suffered a traumatic brain injury in addition to major injuries to his body, including scrotal bruising and seven broken ribs.
Abo told detectives the child had fallen down a stairwell at his Sheridan home.
However, a doctor at Oregon Health & Science University said the massive extensive injuries were not consistent with such a fall. He attributed them to “blunt force trauma” inflicted on at least two separate occasions.
Abo is being held in the Washington County Jail in Hillsboro on $500,000 bail. He is being represented by privately retained attorney Jason Short of Portland.
McMinnville police are prohibited by state Department of Human Services privacy regulations from providing updated information on the boy’s condition.
The boy’s mother, 29-year-old Brandy Robertson, now living in Troutdale, has been charged with one count each of criminal mistreatment and reckless endangering in connection with the case. She was granted a conditional release from jail, provided she have no unsupervised contact with her son, who has been made a ward of the state.
Police said Robertson’s arrest stemmed from extensive follow-up investigation designed to piece together elements of the boy’s life. They said she was interviewed, as were friends, relatives and co-workers.
Robertson has a settlement conference scheduled for 9 a.m. Wednesday, July 2, before Judge Cal Tichenor.