LISBON - A 75-year-old grandfather was found guilty of disorderly conduct by a jury in county Municipal Court Wednesday, but still got one thing he desired - a hug from the victim in the case, his now 11-year-old granddaughter.
David Reed, Center Road, Homeworth, was tried on a domestic violence charge amid allegations he had shoved and then struck his then 10-year-old granddaughter while the child and her friend were at his home. The jury decided Reed was not guilty of domestic violence, but decided he was guilty of disorderly conduct, which was a lesser included charge.
The trial had included family members testifying with additional family members there sitting behind Reed.
Another family member Darla Austin, 50, Bayard Road, Homeworth, was being simultaneously charged with menacing, but following testimony Judge Carol Robb determined the charge should be dismissed before it even went to the jury.
Following the guilty verdict, Robb asked Assistant County Prosecutor Megan Forsythe what the penalty should be. Forsythe said she had spoken to the girl, who told her she did not want anything to happen to her grandfather. She wanted him forgiven.
Robb commended the girl and her teenage friend, who both testified in the case, for going through something difficult and handling it with maturity.
"I'm sorry this family has seemingly been torn apart," Robb said, adding she hoped they could now begin healing. "A step in that direction was led by that young lady in the back, who has indicated she wants to forgive him and get her family back."
Reed was fined $100 and requested from the judge that his granddaughter be permitted to give him a hug. Robb replied that was up to the girl, who as soon as the request was made was already on her way to the defense table to grant the wish.