Monday, August 8, 2011

German Court Sentences Military Wife to 5 Years in Prison

The court-martial of Air Force Airman First Class Horace Wickware begins on September 8th. He is charged with murder, manslaughter, assault, negligent homicide and child endangerment after the death of his infant son. He was living on a base in Germany at the time.

Social workers in Germany became concerned about the child after a base pediatrician made note of a suspicious burn on the child's shoulder. They were scheduled to visit Wickware's home a second time on the day that the child was brought to the German hospital with fatal brain injuries. He had been violently shaken and had fractures on his arms and legs.

Surprisingly, the mother, Jennifer Wickware, was charged by German authorities with failing to protect the child and sentenced to 5 years in prison. Usually women in her position are only charged if they are being uncooperative; and in the US, such charges rarely result in actual jail time.