JEFFERSON COUNTY — A 29-year-old Mt. Vernon man was sentenced today to 30-years in prison, after a Jefferson County jury earlier found him guilty of severely beating a 3-year-old boy that had been left in his care.
Michael Belmont was sentenced to the maximum for Class X felony aggravated battery of a child under the age of 13 resulting in permanent disability, and will have to serve at least 85 percent of his sentence, less the 946 days he has already served since his 2014 arrest.
A jury found Belmont guilty in February of savagely beating Lukas Burris, causing the toddler to be raced to the hospital where he was placed on life support and ultimately suffered a stroke from his severe brain injuries.
Because of his brain injuries, Lukas has little to no use of his left hand, has to wear a brace in his sleep, has to wear a brace on his hand and has to wear a brace on his left leg to walk. He has to wear a helmet to protect his head as he falls frequently, said a victim’s impact statement from Lukas’ father that was read in court.
Lukas has to attend physical therapy every week at preschool and at the hospital, and can’t identify objects with his left eye.
He’s been diagnosed with moderate to severe attention deficit disorder, and has developed pica, a medical condition that makes him want to eat non-food items that could be toxic or otherwise dangerous.
Belmont’s wife Kaysie was also arrested and charged in the incident, but entered into a plea agreement where multiple charges against her in connection with the toddler’s injuries were dismissed in exchange for her guilty plea go a reduced charge of reckless conduct for not seeking immediate medical care for the toddler.
She was sentenced to 30 months probation and was given no jail time for her guilty plea, but agreed to testify honestly against her husband during his trial.