Office of the Attorney General
Attorney General Conway Announces Guilty Plea in Harlan County Child Abuse Case
Attorney General Jack Conway and his Office of Special Prosecutions today announced the guilty plea of a Harlan County man for abusing his twin infant daughters, leaving both with permanent brain damage. Twenty-nine-year-old David Michael Owens pled guilty on Monday, Oct. 11 in Harlan Circuit Court to two counts of assault 2nd degree. He faces five to 10 years in prison for each count. Owens was scheduled to stand trial on the charges later this month.
In June of 2006, physicians at the University of Kentucky Children’s Hospital determined that bruising and bleeding in the brains of Owens’ five-month-old twin daughters were the result of “inflicted trauma.” Kentucky State Police investigated the charges after physicians and social workers in the pediatric intensive care unit at UK hospital notified the Cabinet for Health and Family Services that the injuries to the infants were the result of abuse. Social workers from Child Protective Services of both Fayette and Harlan Counties remained at the infants’ bedsides during weeks of hospitalization.
Due to a conflict of interest, the Harlan County Commonwealth’s Attorney’s office requested that General Conway’s Office of Special Prosecutions handle the prosecution of the case.
“Because of the hard work of the investigators and prosecutors involved in this case, a child abuser is now behind bars,” General Conway said. “My office remains committed to protecting the most vulnerable among us: children, the elderly, and others who are helpless to defend themselves from abuse.”
Owens is scheduled to be sentenced on November 18, 2010 at 11:00 a.m. in Harlan Circuit Court.
David Owens, 29