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Man accused of beating infant son in Scott County

January 15th, 2014 4:33 pm by Wes Bunch

Man accused of beating infant son in Scott County

Jeremy Scott Owens, 36

KINGSPORT — A Southwest Virginia man is facing felony child abuse charges in Scott County for allegedly breaking his 11-week-old son's leg and ribs.

Warrants for the arrest of Jeremy Scott Owens, 36, who has addresses listed in Duffield and Clintwood, were issued in Scott County Tuesday on charges of felony child abuse and malicious wounding. Owens is currently being held in the Sullivan County Jail after having his bond revoked.

The Scott County Sheriff's Office began investigating allegations of child abuse Jan. 5 after Owens' then 11-week-old son was taken to Lonesome Pine Hospital in Big Stone Gap with unspecified injuries.

The child was then reportedly transferred to Niswonger Children's Hospital for further treatment.

At Niswonger, Scott County authorities said doctors determined the infant boy had suffered a broken femur and six broken ribs — three on each side.

Scott County Sheriff's Office criminal investigators said they are still working to determine how the child's injured were inflicted. The incident reportedly occurred at the child's mother's residence, which is located in Scott County's Bishoptown community near Duffield.

Scott County authorities were dispatched to Lonesome Pine shortly after the boy arrived Jan. 5 to begin interviewing the child's parents. Owens reportedly went missing at the time, prompting authorities to spend several days searching for him in both Scott and Dickenson counties.

Owens was arrested at Niswonger Jan. 8 by Johnson City Police on fugitive from justice charges out of Dickenson County, Va.

Following his arrest, Owens was then booked into the Southwest Virginia Regional Jail in Haysi Jan. 10 on a failure to appear charge before being taken into custody in Sullivan County on Jan. 14.

Owens must waive extradition before being moved to Scott County to face charges there.

Scott County Sheriff John Puckett said the investigation of the child's injuries is ongoing and additional charges are likely pending. The Scott County Department of Social Services is also working the case, he said.

Puckett said the child had only been out of Niswonger for roughly two weeks before it was transferred back on Jan. 5.

According to Puckett, the infant was born drug dependent and required nine weeks of treatment before being discharged from the hospital.

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