Mother, boyfriend get maximum prison time in toddler’s death

PRINCETON, W.Va. (AP) — A West Virginia mother and her boyfriend have been sentenced in the beating death of the woman’s 2-year-old son.

John Colan Powers, 47, and Candice Jones, 32, both of Green Valley, were charged in the August 2018 death of Jones’ 2-year-old son, Joseph Garbosky III.

Judge Mark Wills sentenced Powers on Monday to life in prison and sentenced Jones to three to 15 years in prison, the maximum time under her plea deal, the Bluefield Daily Telegraph reported.

Powers entered a best-interest plea earlier this month to death of a child by parent or guardian, and pleaded guilty to child abuse resulting in serious bodily injury earlier this month. In a best-interest plea, the defendant does not admit guilt. Powers said he did not remember beating the boy.

Jones pleaded guilty to child neglect resulting in death. Jones witnessed the abuse, but did not attempt to physically intervene, authorities said.

According to court documents, Powers reportedly slammed the toddler into a bathtub, inflicted a third-degree burn on his arm and caused several broken bones, retinal hemorrhages and brain bleeds.

The boy was taken to a hospital on Aug. 8, 2018, about two weeks after the injuries occurred and died two days later, the newspaper reported.