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Dauphin County man will serve up to 10 years in prison for abusing 6-month-old infant

DAUPHIN COUNTY — A Dauphin County man will serve up to 10 years in prison after pleading no contest to aggravated assault and endangering the welfare of a child charges Thursday in Dauphin County Court.

Starlee Dennis was sentenced to a 4 1/2- to 10-year prison term by Judge Deborah E. Curcillo. The charges stemmed from a Jan. 2, 2015 incident in which he allegedly physically abused a 6-month-old infant in his care.

According to police, the baby was rushed to Penn State Hershey’s Children’s Hospital in critical condition. Authorities at the hospital notified police after discovering the child had suffered 11 rib fractures, bleeding on the brain, blood in his spinal cord, swelling to the ligaments in his neck, extensive retinal hemorrhaging and evidence of blunt force trauma to the abdomen.

Medical personnel told investigators the injuries were acute, and occurred close to the time of the child’s admission to the hospital.

Dennis told police he was the child’s sole caretaker on Jan. 2; the infant’s mother was at work.