Benjamin Edetanlen was sentenced Wednesday to 18 years in prison for killing his 5-month-old son in 2004 because of a paraphrased version of Proverbs 13:24: “He that spareth his rod hateth his son: but he that loveth him chasteneth him betimes.”
According to the Atlanta Journal Constitution, Edetanlen physically abused the infant, as well as a 2-year-old daughter and a 1-year-old son.
“The defendant stated that he disciplined the children, according to the book of Proverbs in the Bible,” said Assistant District Attorney Dalia Racine in court.
The baby died from blunt force trauma. He also suffered from a broken leg and brain injuries.
Though he faced murder charges, Edetanlen pleaded guilty to involuntary manslaughter and child cruelty. Prosecutors asked the court for an 18 year sentence to be served in full, and the judge agreed. He has been ordered to stay away from children after he is released. His wife also faces charges because she allegedly did nothing to stop the abuse.
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Through it all, Edetanlen’s defense attorney claimed that his client loves his children: