Felony charge dropped in hopscotch beating case

Christopher Robison
Christopher Robison

BURLINGTON, KY (FOX19) - Felony charges have been dropped against a dad who was accused of beating his son over a game of hopscotch.

Christopher Robison, 46, was charged with criminal abuse after police say he beat the 5-year-old with a belt for not playing hopscotch up to his standards.

Robison, a teacher at Camp Ernst Middle School, had pled not guilty. He admitted to spanking his son, but said the boy was not seriously injured or crippled.

Boone County Circuit Judge Michael Collins dropped the felony charge against Robison during a pretrial hearing on Monday morning. In a rare move, Judge Collins gave Robinson the option to testify.

"I always put the buckle and loops in my hand and then fold it over, then bring my hand back and swat," Robison said, explaining how he hit his son.

The lead detective read what the boy told her during an interview.

"He said he spanked him two times, then a lot of times, then made him go back out and try again," said Det. Tracy Watson with the Boone County Sheriff's Department.

Robison's attorney, Eric Deters, said his client's spanking hadn't caused bruises before, and there's no way to prove the marks on the boy's backside and thigh didn't come from a fall at the swimming pool days before.

Judge Collins agreed and couldn't find probable cause for the case to move on.

"I think abuse is excessive but it doesn't raise to that level," said Judge Collins.

The defense says they can file a civil lawsuit against the county for the way Robison's case was handled, but they are going to wait and see if prosecutors file lesser charges or take the case to a grand jury.

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