On Monday, December 19, 2016, Judge Craig Carter, acting as specially assigned trial court judge in the Circuit Court of Taney County, sentenced BRYAN J. MATLOCK, d/o/b 10-15-1986, of Hollister, to fifteen (15) years in the Missouri Department of Corrections for abuse of a child and seven (7) years in the Missouri Department of Corrections for endangering the welfare of a child in the first degree. On September 9, 2016, Matlock had entered pleas of guilty to the charges, with the only agreement being that the sentences on the two (2) counts would run concurrently with one another.
On August 26, 2015, Matlock called 9-1-1 because his infant child was having difficulty breathing and was unresponsive. Matlock told Taney County Sheriff’s deputies that he had accidentally fallen on the child, then waited up to twenty (20) minutes after the child was injured to call 9-1-1. Later that day, doctors determined that the infant had serious injuries – including a subdural and subarachnoid hemorrhage and fractured rib, along with bruises and a possible bite mark – which doctors concluded were non-accidental.
Eventually, Matlock confessed to a Taney County detective that he had swung the infant by the feet as the child struck the wooden trim on a couch, had thrown the child on the couch multiple times, had squeezed the child, and had bitten the child that day. Matlock also admitted he had been physically abusing the child in the weeks preceding August 26, 2015. Matlock’s explanation for his abuse of the infant was that the child would not stop crying.
The class B felony of abuse of a child carries a range of punishment from five (5) to fifteen (15) years in the Missouri Department of Corrections. The class C felony of endangering the welfare of a child in the first degree carries a maximum sentence of seven (7) years in the Missouri Department of Corrections and/or a $5,000.00 fine.