Death sentence for father who fatally beat, starved toddler

CINCINNATI -- The father of a 2-year-old girl who was starved and badly beaten before she died was sentenced to death Monday for aggravated murder.

Hamilton County Common Pleas Court Judge Megan Shanahan followed the jury’s recommendation that 34-year-old Glen Bates should be executed for the death of his daughter Glenara.

Bates’ attorney said he wants to appeal the sentence. Bates didn’t speak at the sentencing hearing.

Glen Bates in an Ohio court Oct. 17, 2016 WKRC

The jury in Cincinnati convicted Bates on multiple charges in Glenara’s death. His attorneys had argued that he should get life in prison and that such a sentence would force him to think about what happened every day.

Glenara was pronounced dead in March 2015 after her mother took her to a hospital. An autopsy found she had died of blunt force trauma, reports CBS affiliate WKRC. Prosecutors said Glenara had belt and bite marks, bruises, missing teeth, broken ribs, head trauma and other injuries.

Glenara weighed 13 pounds when she died. The average 2-year-old weighs more than 20 pounds.

Prosecutors said Glen Bates slammed the little girl into a wall, WKRC reports. The jury rejected the defense’s claim that Bates was only playing with the child.

“This man is a murderer who needs to pay for what he did to this innocent baby,” Hamilton County Prosecutor Joe Deters said in a statement. “My heart breaks for this little girl. She died in one of the most horrific ways imaginable.”

The jury deliberated less than an hour Monday before recommending death, the station reports. The judge could have overruled the recommendation and imposed a life sentence, but did not. Bates reportedly rejected several previous plea bargains that would have spared him the death penalty.

Glenara’s mother, Andrea Bradley, has pleaded not guilty in the case. She has a plea hearing scheduled for Tuesday. She also reportedly faces aggravated murder charges, but her attorneys have said an intellectual disability means she is not legally eligible for the death penalty if convicted.

Authorities said her other six children are in the custody of relatives or family services.