WAUPACA — A 22-year-old woman accused of locking her 18-month-old son in a car seat for hours as discipline can avoid a criminal conviction if she stays out of trouble for a year.
Jazzmine Morin-Muthig, 22, formerly of Manawa, was charged in August with felony child abuse/recklessly causing harm in connection with an investigation that began in November 2016. Those charges were amended Tuesday by a Waupaca County judge to misdemeanor battery.
The charges will be dropped altogether if Morin-Muthig follows the rules set out by a probation officer. Judge Troy Nielsen also ordered Morin-Muthig to write monthly reports detailing her progress to the district attorney’s office, undergo AODA treatment and provide written proof that she is complying with the judge’s orders.
Police began to investigate Morin-Muthing after the toddler’s father alerted authorities he saw bruises on the child. One witness reported hearing Morin-Muthing swear at her son and threaten to beat him if he misbehaved, according to the criminal complaint. Another witness told police she saw Morin-Muthing hit the boy.
The complaint also states that multiple witnesses told police Morin-Muthing would confine the child to a car seat for naps or discipline, sometimes as long as 8 hours or overnight.
A judge will review the case in November 2018 and if all imposed conditions have been satisfied, the charges against Morin-Muthig will be dismissed entirely at that time. Court records show Morin-Muthig relocated to Fond du Lac this month.