VIERA, Fla - A Brevard County father has been found guilty after pleading no contest on Friday to all charges after being accused of starving his 13-year-old son.
Michael Marshall, 40, pleaded no contest to all 11 counts related to aggravated child abuse and unlawful imprisonment Friday afternoon in front of Circuit Court Judge David Dugan.
Police found the boy locked away, lying on the bathroom floor of Marshall's Titusville home in March 2012, malnourished and weighing just 40 pounds.
"He was deprived access to showers. His food was limited at times to no meals at all and one meal a day. He had to earn meals back," said state prosecutor Will Scheiner. "Bedding was deprived of him. Clothing, showers, all necessities of life were deprived of him."
Throughout the course of two years, prosecutors said Marshall and his live-in girlfriend, Sharon Glass, who was convicted on 7 counts of child abuse last month, locked the teen in a closet, zip-tied him to a bed post for days at a time and starved him.
Marshall told the judge Friday that he and Glass were trying to teach his son a lesson for misbehaving.
"We were basically trying to get him to be a good boy, basically. She [Glass] said it's a good thing to get him to rock bottom then he might straighten up," Marshall told the judge.
He went on to say that the abuse of his son did not come until Sharon Glass and her family moved in.
Marshall said the teen was stealing, lying and cheating and Glass wanted him "locked up" while she was home.
"But we wasn't trying to hurt him or anything. We were trying to help him, but we went the wrong way about it," said Marshall.
Marshall's sentence hearing is in April and he could face anywhere from 19.25 to 30 years in prison.
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