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Court upholds Sturgis’ conviction for murder of son

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St. Joseph County resident Jerry L. Sturgis Sr. lost his appeal before the Indiana Court of Appeals Thursday that challenged convictions stemming from the beatings and abuse of three of his children, leading to the death of his 10-year-old son in 2011.

In Terry L. Sturgis, Sr. v. State of Indiana,  71A03-1207-CR-330, Sturgis argued that the trial court abused its discretion in limiting his cross-examination of one of his sons at his trial, that the evidence couldn’t support his murder conviction, and double jeopardy required reversal of some convictions.

Sturgis was charged with numerous counts as a result of the malicious and severe beatings of his children, including murder and battery. Some of the battery charges were related to Sturgis hitting the children with a hot iron, others for striking them with a rod. He beat his 10-year-old son so severely that he died from blunt force trauma to the head.

The Court of Appeals found no limitation by the trial court regarding Sturgis’ cross-examination of his third-oldest child at trial, and that he was, in fact, allowed to cross-examine the boy on whether the oldest child physically abused his siblings and asked the other boy to lie about it.

There is more than enough evidence from which a reasonable trier of fact could have determined that beatings by Sturgis caused his 10-year-old son’s death and that Sturgis knowingly killed the boy, Senior Judge Betty Barteau wrote.

Finally, the appeals court found no double jeopardy violations under the Indiana Constitution.

 

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  1. It is amazing how selectively courts can read cases and how two very similar factpatterns can result in quite different renderings. I cited this very same argument in Brown v. Bowman, lost. I guess it is panel, panel, panel when one is on appeal. Sad thing is, I had Sykes. Same argument, she went the opposite. Her Rooker-Feldman jurisprudence is now decidedly unintelligible.

  2. November, 2014, I was charged with OWI/Endangering a person. I was not given a Breathalyzer test and the arresting officer did not believe that alcohol was in any way involved. I was self-overmedicated with prescription medications. I was taken to local hospital for blood draw to be sent to State Tox Lab. My attorney gave me a cookie-cutter plea which amounts to an ALCOHOL-related charge. Totally unacceptable!! HOW can I get my TOX report from the state lab???

  3. My mother got temporary guardianship of my children in 2012. my husband and I got divorced 2015 the judge ordered me to have full custody of all my children. Does this mean the temporary guardianship is over? I'm confused because my divorce papers say I have custody and he gets visits and i get to claim the kids every year on my taxes. So just wondered since I have in black and white that I have custody if I can go get my kids from my moms and not go to jail?

  4. Someone off their meds? C'mon John, it is called the politics of Empire. Get with the program, will ya? How can we build one world under secularist ideals without breaking a few eggs? Of course, once it is fully built, is the American public who will feel the deadly grip of the velvet glove. One cannot lay down with dogs without getting fleas. The cup of wrath is nearly full, John Smith, nearly full. Oops, there I go, almost sounding as alarmist as Smith. Guess he and I both need to listen to this again: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CRnQ65J02XA

  5. Charles Rice was one of the greatest of the so-called great generation in America. I was privileged to count him among my mentors. He stood firm for Christ and Christ's Church in the Spirit of Thomas More, always quick to be a good servant of the King, but always God's first. I had Rice come speak to 700 in Fort Wayne as Obama took office. Rice was concerned that this rise of aggressive secularism and militant Islam were dual threats to Christendom,er, please forgive, I meant to say "Western Civilization". RIP Charlie. You are safe at home.

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