Marionville mother pleads down to misdemeanor in child abuse case

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Jul. 15—MOUNT VERNON, Mo. — A 40-year-old mother from Marionville pleaded down to a misdemeanor assault charge this week in a case involving the alleged abuse of her teenage daughter.

Lisa N. Williams had been facing three felony counts of child abuse prior to pleading guilty to a reduced count of misdemeanor assault at a plea hearing Tuesday in Lawrence County Circuit Court and receiving a suspended sentence and probation.

Her agreement with the Lawrence County prosecutor's office dismissed two of the abuse counts and reduced the third to a misdemeanor. Circuit Judge David Cole accepted the plea bargain and assessed Williams 30 days in jail with execution of the sentence suspended and the defendant placed on probation for two years.

The charges pertained to an argument between the defendant and her 15-year-old daughter on Jan. 7, 2020, during which Williams allegedly put the girl in a headlock and punched her in the head. The girl told investigators that her mother had assaulted her in a similar fashion in May or June of 2019, according to a probable-cause affidavit.

Jeff Lehr is a reporter for The Joplin Globe.