Franklin Man Waives Hearing, Franklin Woman Held for Court in Toddler Abuse Case

| February 28, 2019

FRANKLIN, Pa. (EYT) – Two Venango County residents accused in a physical abuse case involving a toddler appeared in court yesterday.

According to court documents, the following charges against 25-year-old Richard Alan Jones Jr. were waived for court on Wednesday, February 27:

– Simple Assault, Misdemeanor 2
– Endangering Welfare of Children – Parent/Guardian/Other Commits Offense, Misdemeanor 1
– Harassment – Subject Other to Physical Contact, Summary

Jones remains free on $15,000.00 unsecured bail.

Court documents indicate the following charges against 22-year-old Vanysia J. Covington, of Franklin, were held for court on Wednesday, February 27:

– Simple Assault, Misdemeanor 1
– Endangering Welfare of Children – Parent/Guardian/Other Commits Offense, Misdemeanor 1
– Harassment – Subject Other to Physical Contact, Summary

Covington also remains free on $15,000.00 unsecured bail.

The charges have been transferred to the Venango County Court of Common Pleas.

Details of the case:

According to a criminal complaint, on Wednesday, September 19, Patrolman Harrah, of the Franklin Police Department, was assigned to a Children’s and Youth Services report stating that a two-year-old male victim was seen at Meadville Medical Center with bruising to his buttocks. The physicians reported that abuse was suspected and that the victim had stated that “Richie whooped him.”

Franklin Police Officers found that the victim was in the care of Vanysia Covington and 25-year-old Richard Jones at a residence on Dale Avenue on September 18, 2018.

It was learned that the victim’s mother – Vanysia Covington – had left the child in Jones’ care at approximately 4:00 p.m. when she left for work. Shortly thereafter, Jones contacted Covington stating that the victim had fallen down some stairs, and then she came home. Jones stated that when he checked the victim after the fall, he found a cluster of bruises in the area of the buttocks that he stated appeared to be old.

Jones had denied the allegations of abuse and stated that he had never spanked or physically corrected the child in any manner. During the interview, Jones “displayed several signs of being deceitful,” according to the complaint.

In an interview, Covington stated that she had bathed and dressed the child night before getting ready for work, and there was no bruising on the child at that time. Covington had also stated that she did see bruises once she was called back to the apartment, the complaint states.

Neither individual had provided the duty of care to the victim after causing or learning of said injuries, the complaint states.

According to the complaint, the victim’s father and stepmother took the child to Meadville Medical Center immediately upon learning of the injuries. Meadville Medical Center reported to CYS, and CYS sent the photographs of the victim’s injuries to UPMC Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh Child Advocacy Center to have them reviewed by physicians for a medical assessment for the concerns of child maltreatment. The physicians’ assessment was that they believe the bruises were the result of physical abuse and not from a fall down the stairs.


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