Father of murdered infant sentenced to 45 years in Florida prison

SARASOTA, Fla. (AP/WSVN) — A Florida father has accepted a plea deal that will send him to prison for 45 years for suffocating his 7-week-old son.

The Herald-Tribune reports 38-year-old Joseph Walsh shrugged off emotional statements from family member before being led from the courtroom in Sarasota on Tuesday.

State Attorney Ed Brodsky says Walsh abused Chance Walsh in a drug-induced rage on Sept. 16, 2015, before putting a baby wipe in the infant’s throat.

Grandmother Sally Susino told the newspaper the family would have preferred a life sentence or the death penalty. But that was off the table after the apparent suicide of the infant’s mother Kristin Bury-Walsh last September. She was required under her plea deal to testify against Walsh.

Chance’s grandparents had the opportunity to speak directly to Walsh in court, Fox 13 reported.

“I’m a grandmother without grandchildren because of you,” Sussino told Walsh. “I hope for the next 45 years your dreams are haunted by what you’ve done and you suffer the same pain you conflicted on my precious grandson Chance.”

“While you sit and rot in prison, I hope you live every day what it feels like to know you stole all of that from us,” said Chance’s other grandmother, Kimberly Millwater. “He could have had such a great life. You stole everything from us, Joe. I hate you for it. I hope you rot in hell.”

The child’s body was found in a shallow grave near Sarasota.

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