Father acquitted of unlawful restraint for picture of taped baby on Facebook, still faces battery charges
BY RUMMANA HUSSAIN Criminal Courts Reporter firstname.lastname@example.org October 30, 2012 6:22PM
Andre Curry, who after posting a picture of Facebook, was charged with 3 felonies. Friday, March 2, 2012. | Brian Jackson~Sun-Times
Updated: December 1, 2012 4:44PM
A toddler who was allegedly bound in painter’s tape by her young father and then had her picture with the adhesive posted on Facebook was jovial and playful following the stunt and did not have any visible injuries, her relatives and a Chicago Police detective testified Tuesday.
“She was laughing. He was laughing and I started laughing because she was laughing,” Annastesia Curry said, describing the antics at her South Side home last year.
Curry said her sibling, Andre, and her then 22-month old niece were horsing around when her brother decided to place the blue tape on the girl’s mouth, ankles and wrists for roughly 30 seconds.
The baby was giggling during the act and minutes later when she was freed of the tape, guffawed as she ran into the kitchen, Annastesia Curry said at her brother’s hour long bench trial before Cook County Judge Lawrence Flood.
Defense attorney Sam Adam Jr. argued that Andre Curry, 22, did something “stupid, not criminal,” and should have never been charged with aggravated domestic battery, domestic battery and unlawful restraint for the “joke.”
But not everyone thought it was a laughing matter.
Andre Curry’s Facebook “friends” called law enforcement officials after he posted a picture of his daughter and captioned the photo “This is wut happens wen my baby hits me back. ; ),” prosecutors said.
He even texted the picture to the child’s mother, writing “Mommy help me,” the mother, Yesmin Doss, 21, said, testifying for the prosecution.
However, even though Doss didn’t find the text as humorous as her former boyfriend, she didn’t think he intended to harm their child.
“He’s a very good father,” said Doss, who is currently living with the girl.
Even detective Charles Hollendoner said he didn’t see any bruises or marks on the baby when he went to check up on her days after the Dec. 13 incident.
The child was in good spirits and playing, the officer said.
“She was walking and talking but she wouldn’t say anything to me. She just smiled,” Hollendoner said.
But Hollendoner also told assistant state’s attorney Elizabeth Ciaccia that children who have been suffocated or had their breath impeded may not show outward signs of injuries.
Hollendoner said Andre Curry told him he was playing with his daughter when he came up with the “joke.”
He also told Hollendoner that he taped the girl after she slapped him but didn’t mean any harm.
When cross-examined by Adam, Hollendoner said Andre Curry additionally relayed that the two continued to “play” following the slap and that he did not tape his daughter in retaliation.
Adam didn’t present any witnesses but asked the judge to clear his client in the case he earlier described as “silly.”
Flood acquitted Andre Curry of unlawful restraint Tuesday but will render his verdict on the pair of domestic battery charges on Nov. 8.