Judge reviewing plea bargain on Lufkin autistic child abuse case - KTRE.com | Lufkin and Nacogdoches, Texas

Judge reviewing plea bargain on Lufkin autistic child abuse case

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Russell Gorsuch (Source: Angelina County Jail) Russell Gorsuch (Source: Angelina County Jail)
LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) -

Thursday a man accused of abusing his autistic son appeared before a judge at the Angelina County court house.

Thirty-year-old Russell Gorsuch was arrested in July of 2012 for allegedly injuring his 5-year-old son by pulling him off the top of a bunk bed.

"When you can't communicate you become frustrated and when you become frustrated you act out sometimes in anger," said Lara Squiers, the executive director of Harold's House.

According to the affidavit, the child suffered bruising on his back and butt. In the affidavit, Gorsuch admitted that he gets frustrated with child and his disciplinary tactics could potentially cause injury.

The key to proper discipline with any child is communication, Squiers said.

"The child is living an overwhelming and disorganizing world anyway, and they have a very difficult time communicating," Squiers said.

In court Thursday, Gorsuch tried to plead guilty to the state felony charge of injury to a child in exchange for a probation sentence. However, Judge Barry Bryan said he wanted to review Gorsuch's criminal record before approving the deal.

If he receives probation, the terms may require Gorsuch to attend certain programs to help prevent these situations.

"They could be very specific, they could order him to parenting classes or congenital behavior classes or anger management," said Dustin Fore, a supervisor for Angelina County's Adult Probation Department.

Probation officials say it's up to the individual to apply what they learn to his or her everyday lives.

"He's going to have to learn to deal with those issues; it's not just going to be about anger management," Fore said. "It's going to be how to deal for the rest of his life."

For now, the child remains in the custody of his biological mother.

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