A Tullytown husband and wife will spend the next 10 to 21 years in state prison for abusing their twin girls.
Melissa A. Shales, 26, and Michael K. Shales, 31, were sentenced Friday by Bucks County Judge Raymond F. McHugh, who called the case "one of the most horrific examples of child abuse that I've ever seen," according to the Bucks County District Attorney's Office.
The couple pleaded guilty in May to one count of aggravated assault and one count of endangering the welfare of children for the crimes that prosecutors said left one of the infants with a cut in her throat, broken bones in her leg, neck injuries and a broken leg. The other girl also had broken bones in her leg. Authorities took the twins from their parents in March 2016. Both girls were found injured and undernourished.
Inside the Shales' home, police found soiled diapers and dishes throughout the apartment along with needles and other drug paraphernalia. Unspent bullets were also strewn about in reach of the girls and their 2-year-old brother, prosecutors said.
The cut on the infant's throat was caused when Michael Shales, while high on heroin, used a pair of pliers to remove a piece of gauze from her throat. The girl has required the use of a feeding tube since the injury, according to the DA's office.
One week before police came to the home, Melissa Shales grabbed the same infant's leg while bathing her and heard a pop, according to the DA's office. Both parents, prosecutors said, repeatedly attempted to pop and twist the leg back into place, which likely caused more extensive injury. "It shakes my faith in human beings," McHugh added.
#pennsylvania #news #buckscounty #tullytown