Woman Allegedly Bites Ear of Five-year-old Child, Pinches Genital Area – Judge Finds Evidence Sufficient for Child Abuse Trial

By Michael Apfel

MODESTO, CA – Deputy District Attorney Larissa Jones presented evidence in Stanislaus County Superior Court this week that Markie Chase allegedly bit the ear of her former boyfriend’s five-year-old son, and also pinched the child in his genital area.

Judge Shawn Bessey agreed with the prosecution there was sufficient cause for the case to appear in court, scheduling the next proceedings for Oct. 21.

The alleged victim was the first witness called to the stand, testifying to his interactions with the accused, law enforcement, and child protective services. His father was in the courtroom as his designated support person.

The child testified that, last year, the accused grabbed his ear and bit the tip of it while he was talking to his three-year-old little brother inside of a Target in Modesto.

The alleged victim testified that, on another occasion, the accused threatened to cut him and pinched him in his genital area with her fingers while they were in the car.

The child later spoke to his elementary school teachers about these incidents, and he was directed to a social worker and a police officer. When speaking to the officer, the child testified he left out details because he was scared when talking about the incidents.

On cross-examination, he was asked if he told the authorities his injuries were self-inflicted, and he did not remember what he said to them. He also testified that he did not remember playfully roughhousing with the accused.

Following this examination, the prosecution called Modesto Police Officer Alexander Estep, who spoke with the alleged victim.

Officer Estep was dispatched to assist Child Protective Services in response to child abuse allegations. He first spoke with a CPS worker about the allegations and learned from the CPS worker about the alleged victim’s sustained injuries.

The CPS worker photographed the injuries, and the photographs were introduced to the court as evidence. The officer was able to identify the photographs as depictions of the alleged victim’s injuries.

Officer Estep testified that the photographs showed severe bruising and swelling around the alleged victim’s genital area. The officer spoke with the alleged victim about the injuries, and the child stated the accused pinched him in the genital area.

The officer later interviewed the accused who denied physically disciplining the child and said she didn’t know how the injuries were sustained. The officer also learned that the accused had been living with the child and his father for eight months.

About The Author

Michael Apfel is a second year at USC majoring in Legal Studies and minoring in Sports Media Industries. He plans on law school after his undergraduate studies looking to work in social justice.

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