Ore. adoptive parents plead not guilty to beating 9-year-old boy, making him sleep on porch

EUGENE, Ore. (AP) — An Oregon couple has pleaded not guilty to charges that they abused their 9-year-old adopted son by beating him, throwing him into a creek and making him sleep on their porch.

Forty-six-year-old Alona Lee Hartwig and her husband, 51-year-old Rodger Eugene Hartwig Jr., entered their pleas Tuesday in Lane County Circuit Court in Eugene.

Each is charged with two counts of second-degree assault and five counts of first-degree criminal mistreatment. Alona Hartwig faces an additional charge of first-degree assault.

Lane County sheriff's detectives arrested the Hartwigs on May 28 after a two-month investigation.

Authorities say the boy was hospitalized for more than a month after suffering severe burns, broken bones and other injuries.

Court records say he told investigators he was beaten, thrown into a creek, fed formula to keep off weight and often made to sleep without a blanket on the porch.


Information from: The Register-Guard, http://www.registerguard.com