The parents reached negotiated plea agreements with Dearborn County prosecutors this February.
(Dearborn County, Ind.) - Plea agreements have been reached by a Sunman couple whose three-year-old son fatally shot himself in 2016.
Shane and Amanda Griffith were each indicted on a charge of Neglect of a Dependent Resulting in Death (level 1 felony) in January 2017, nearly a year after their son, Christopher Griffith’s death at their Van Wedding Road home.
According to the indictment, on February 26, 2016, Shane Griffith had left a loaded revolver in reach of his son. Samantha Griffith had placed the child on a bed next to the firearm. The boy then picked it up and fired the shot that killed him.
The parents reached negotiated plea agreements with Dearborn County prosecutors this February. They are each pleading guilty to Neglect of a Dependent (level 5 felony) and Criminal Recklessness (level 6 felony).
Shane Griffith, 32, has been sentenced by Dearborn Circuit Court Judge James D. Humphrey to six years, with 210 days in jail. He is currently incarcerated.
Samantha Griffith, 32, will be formally sentenced April 10. Her plea agreement calls for punishment of six years and 210 days on probation, with the first 180 days under in-home incarceration.
The couple was represented by a defense team consisting of Lawrenceburg attorneys Jared Ewbank, Robert Ewbank, and Anthony Smart.
“The Griffiths were looking at a 20 year non-suspended sentence,” explained Jared Ewbank. “Therefore, under the totality of the circumstances, this plea gave them the ability to control their fate and to raise their surviving son. There is always an uncertainty as to how a jury may rule. Sometimes good citizens find themselves in dire situations.”