An 18-year-old Tacoma man accused of abusing his 7-day-old son was ordered jailed Wednesday in lieu of $1 million bail.
Joshua Charles Paul Sullivan is charged with one count of first-degree child assault with aggravating factors. Deputy Prosecutor Michelle Hyer said Sullivan abused a position of trust when he harmed his son in May.
The addition of the aggravating factor could qualify Sullivan for a life sentence if he’s convicted as charged, Hyer said.
Court Commissioner Meagan Foley entered a not guilty plea on Sullivan’s behalf during his arraignment in Pierce County Superior Court.
Detectives sought an arrest warrant for Sullivan last week. They found him early Tuesday at a local hotel. Hyer said he was trying to evade capture.
The prosecutor told Foley the victim suffered “egregious” injuries and might not survive. The boy underwent brain surgery to treat a head wound and suffered other injuries, Hyer said.
Detectives began investigating the case when Sullivan and the child’s mother brought the boy to a hospital. Doctors said the boy’s injuries were consistent with a baby being violently shaken, court records show.