LAWRENCEBURG — Rejecting a defense attorney's plea for probation, a judge sentenced Carolyn Case on Tuesday to five years in prison for tying up her 3-year-old granddaughter for hours at a time.
Case, 66, of Lawrenceburg, pleaded guilty last month to second-degree criminal abuse. Under a plea agreement, prosecutors recommended a five-year sentence and objected to probation.
Defense attorney Max Comley argued for probation Tuesday in Anderson Circuit Court.
Comley said that Case's file contained "a stack of letters in support" of her and that a pre-sentence investigation showed "she has never been charged or convicted of any crime" except the one before the court.
"When you take all these factors into consideration ... then she would be a good candidate for probation," Comley said.
Judge Charles Hickman disagreed.
To grant probation "would depreciate the serious nature of the offense," Hickman said.
The facts show that it was a serious offense against a child, the judge said.
As part of the plea deal, Case must testify against the girl's mother and stepfather, Rebecca and Herbert Medley, during their trials on related charges. They each face a charge of first-degree criminal abuse, the original charge filed against Case. It is a felony punishable by five to 10 years in prison. Rebecca Medley's trial is scheduled for Sept. 8; a status hearing for Herbert Medley is scheduled March 4.
Case and the Medleys were arrested in August 2012 after Kentucky State Police investigated an abuse complaint by a child protective services caseworker.
Troopers interviewed Case, who acknowledged that she tied the girl to a bed, and she showed them the bed inside her home.
Case said she began tying the girl to the bed with a green curtain sash "at night because she was getting out of bed and getting into things," according to court files. Case also told police the girl "attempted to leave the house while everyone was asleep."
Case told police she had seen Rebecca Medley tie the girl to the bed. Sometimes the girl would be tied from 8 p.m. until 6 a.m. the next day.
State police took the curtain sash into evidence and took photographs of the bed and the rest of the house. The report said the sash was laced through the arm holes of the girl's shirt and behind her back.
"It was fastened to her bed using a large horse-collar safety pin," the report said. "The green sash was also used to tie her to a blue booster seat that was fastened to a kitchen chair."
Since pleading guilty last month, Case has been indicted on a perjury charge for allegedly lying about her financial status in order to have a court-appointed attorney defend her on the abuse charge.
Case said in court Tuesday that she didn't have an attorney to represent her on the latest indictment. For that reason, Hickman postponed arraignment on the perjury charge until March 18.
Greg Kocher: (859) 231-3305. Twitter: @HLpublicsafety.