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Winston-Salem man convicted of physically abusing 3-month-old boy

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Chalmers Gray Bohannon, Jr. (Winston-Salem Police Department)

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. — A 60-year-old Winston-Salem man was convicted this morning on allegations that he physically assaulted a 3-month-old boy, causing bleeding on his brain and breaking his legs.

A Forsyth County jury took about 90 minutes to find Chalmers Gray Bohannon of the 2000 block of Craig Street guilty of intentional child abuse inflicting serious bodily injury and two counts of intentional child abuse inflicting serious physical injury.

Judge Edwin Wilson of Forsyth Superior Court sentenced Bohannon to 17 years and 11 months to 24 years and 7 months in prison.

According to testimony, the child’s 23-year-old mother had gone to Walgreens the night of Sept. 7, 2012. She left her son in Bohannon’s care. When she returned, her son was not in the crib where she had left him but was propped up in her bed with pillows.

Bohannon had been outside on the porch with his dog, according to testimony. When she asked Bohannon what happened, he told her he didn’t know.

The boy’s face was red. She checked on him the next day before she went to work and when she got back, the reddening appeared worse, according to testimony. The boy was then taken to Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center.

Bohannon couldn’t explain the boy’s injuries to doctors and told police that the boy had fallen off a couch.

During the trial, Dr. David Cline, Dr. Lauren Golding and Dr. Meggan Goodpasture testified that the injuries the boy suffered were significant and didn’t appear to be accidental. Goodpasture said that the injuries appeared consistent with child abuse.

Andrew Keever, an assistant public defender representing Bohannon, said in closing arguments that prosecutors had not presented sufficient evidence to prove that Bohannon had physically abused the boy, pointing to inconsistent statements that the mother made to doctors and in her testimony.

Keever also said that the bruising could have been caused by an allergic reaction and that prosecutors could not definitively prove when his injuries had occurred. He also said that one of the fractures may have happened after the boy had been taken to the hospital and was out of Bohannon’s care.

Assistant District Attorney Kia Chavious said in closing arguments that Bohannon had lied to doctors and to police about what had happened to the boy and had shown no emotion when he was shown pictures of the boy’s injuries during an interview with police.

“This is not an accident,” she said. “This is not an allergic reaction. … This is abuse, plain and simple.”

Before he was sentenced this morning, Bohannon denied that he abused the boy. Wilson pointed out that Bohannon had a long criminal history, including convictions for assault on a female, escape from prison, and robbery and larceny charges.

“Even during the trial, you didn’t show any emotion to the pictures of these injuries …,” he said. “It’s pretty clear what happened. … I’m going to give you every day allowed by law. You’ve earned it.”



  • Sly

    Hopefully when he gets to his new Home/Cell Someone will break his legs and beat him in the head until his brain bleeds out.

  • Richard Nance

    His so called Public Defender Sleaze should be put in jail with this animal, he tried to lie about what happened to the child just so he could get this guy off & back out in Society, hopefully the prisoners will perform Prison Justice on the Perpetrator & hopefully that Public Defender, Andrew Keever will get run over by a Tractor Trailer sooner then later!!!

    • Learnthelaw

      Your blood lust is a little concernig Richard. Your comments can be seen to some as a threat. Threats are illegal. Using your logic I would think that you would be OK if officers shot you on site.
      We have a Constitution for a reason. I’m glad to know you think we should ignore it. The guy got a trial and was found guilty. That is how it’s suppose to work.

  • nurse one

    He stated “hopefully that public defender will get run over by a tractor trailer”…He didn’t say, “I am going to run him over with a tractor trailer” . And by stating that he hopes the other prisoners will perform prison justice is much different than saying, “I will perform justice”. Just his opinion. I may or may not not agree with it either, but I didn’t see a threat.

    • Learnthelaw

      If you are a nurse stick to your day job. People are arrested for communicating threats for saying much less.
      (3)The threat is made in a manner and under circumstances which would cause a reasonable person to believe that the threat is likely to be carried out; and
      (4) The person threatened believes that the threat will be carried out

      • Eagle

        What was the threat,eh? You sound just like Johnny “Deer in the headlights” Edwards, another ambulance chaser looking for threats.

  • Selena

    A public defender has a job to defend people, not lie. Their job is to try to defend the person being accused. Just as it is the District Attorneys job to prosecute. This particular defender was doing his job, you don’t get to only defend the innocent. You don’t get to pick and choose. People are appointed because they can not afford an attorney, not because you may or may not have done something wrong, but that’s where a judge and jury come in. This man was found guilty and will be away from society for a long time with hopes no one will ever be hurt by him again. But don’t blame the man that was doing his job, you may never know what it’s like to walk in his shoes. You take the good with the bad but his job does not define him as a person. I support and respect Andrew Keever. He is a court appointed attorney, not Chalmers Bohannon.

  • nurse one

    I could say I wish a house dropped on you…but until I say I will drop a house on is just an opinion. I deal with jerk lawywers over frivolous lawsuits all the time. If people are arrested for saying those things. wow. Sounds frivolous to me. Hope you keep your day job and keep us tax payers from paying for frivolous bullcrap. Yes, I am quite aware there are things that concern people…And people may speak threats in certain terms to get away with it. But if someone told me they wished I was run over by a truck…I would simply laugh at the matter. Now I may not turn my back on them, but that would not give me enough reason to call the police. Us as nurses get threatened all the time by our mentally ill patients, even get attacked. We cannot use force. But our wonderful police system can. Where is the justice in that?

  • nurse one

    Oh, and the metaphoric comment of a house dropping on anyone is quite a comical statement as we are right in the path of tornadic weather. So it will probably drop on me before any of you.

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