This is so f**king sad…
The little boy was stuck on the word sad.
Five-year-old Dashawn Harris had already endured hours of pain during his “home-schooling” phonics lesson, and with every mistake came another big-fisted punch or stinging lash from his mother’s boyfriend’s black leather belt.
He was crying and bleeding, and his mother was doing nothing to stop it. Now he was having trouble sounding out the “a” in sad.
Christian Patrick, 25, a convicted drug dealer, lived with Dashawn’s mother, Lashay Patterson, in her unkempt North Philadelphia apartment. Patrick, called “Dude” by Patterson, later told police he had wanted to try a new method of teaching during the Nov. 30 lesson. He was going to be nice and not holler so much, he said.
But Dashawn was acting like he didn’t know anything, he said, and that made him mad.
“When he got the ‘a’ part, I told him to tell me the last part of sad, because I wanted him to say it correctly,” Patrick told police. “I told him if he didn’t tell me the letter that made the ‘d’ sound, he was going to get another beating. So he said the letter ‘w,’ and I told him he was wrong, and he just started saying every letter except the ‘d’ sound, so I beat him again.”
That is how the final hours of Dashawn Harris’ life were described during a preliminary hearing Wednesday morning.
Covered in bruises, Dashawn was already dead when Patterson and Patrick finally called an ambulance early Dec. 1.
The couple tried raising the boy’s dropping body temperature by placing a hair drier against his stomach, removing it when Dashawn managed to moan in pain. They taped toilet paper over the burn.
Patterson and Patrick initially told police that Dashawn fell off a bicycle before giving statements describing the months of pain they inflicted.
We gotta warn you, this next part is enough to break your heart into a million pieces.
Patrick, about 6 feet tall, weighing 230 pounds, said he warned Dashawn that if he did not finish his work, he would have to eat the previous night’s soup instead of pizza. He threatened to take away Christmas.
“But that seemed not to faze him, either,” he told police. “I told him, if he kept acting like he didn’t want to do his work, I’m going to beat him.”
He beat him with a belt, but Dashawn wouldn’t stand still, so he punched him in the chest “like five times.”
When Dashawn got stuck on sad, he began punching him again.
“His eyes went real low and he was sitting on the floor, and you could see him breathing, but he looked like he was passing out,” Patrick said.
Both Lashay and Christian were charged with 1st degree murder, as they should be.
Image via Philly.com