Judge reviewing plea bargain on Lufkin autistic child abuse case

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 ajudge at the Angelina County court house.

Thirty-year-old Russell Gorsuch was arrested in July of 2012 forallegedly 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 youbecome frustrated you act out sometimes in anger," said Lara Squiers, the executivedirector of Harold's House.

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

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

"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 felonycharge of injury to a child in exchange for a probation sentence. However,Judge Barry Bryan said he wanted to review Gorsuch's criminal record beforeapproving the deal.

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

"They could be very specific, they could order him to parentingclasses 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 theylearn to his or her everyday lives.

"He's going to have to learn to deal with those issues; it's notjust going to be about anger management," Fore said. "It's going to be how todeal for the rest of his life."

For now, the child remains in the custody of hisbiological mother.

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