Indiana court rejects appeal of fatal abuser


An Indiana court has rejected the argument of a father convicted of murder that he didn't know that repeatedly beating and burning his 10-year-old son would result in the child's death.

The Indiana Court of Appeals on Thursday declined to reduce Terry Sturgis' 140-year sentence for murder in the 2011 death of his son Tramelle. A jury in South Bend also convicted Sturgis of several counts of battery, neglect and criminal confinement for his treatment of his two other sons.

Sturgis argued that prosecutors didn't prove that he "knowingly and intentionally" killed another person, as required by Indiana's murder statute.

In a unanimous opinion, the court said it could not believe Sturgis' assertion that he was unaware that severely beating Tramelle was likely to kill him.

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