Crime Library: Criminal Minds and Methods

Woman Gets 20 Years in Severe Child Abuse Case

Dianeth Pittman. Police photo.

A Colorado woman has pleaded guilty in what a Mesa County Sheriff’s Office investigator said is the most severe case of child abuse he’d seen in his 24 years in law enforcement.

Dianeth Pittman, 41, was sentenced to 20 years in prison with five years of parole on Tuesday after pleading guilty to child abuse resulting in serious bodily injury.

Pittman was arrested in 2011 after a 4-year-old girl she was babysitting told deputies that Pittman had become angry and threw her on the floor, smashing her face, and then picked her up and threw her at the wall. The girl also showed police a scar on her stomach that had resulted from a knife that Pittman had heated up and used to burn the girl. According to testimony, Pittman told the victim that she would be burned again if she told anyone. Pittman claimed that the burn had been caused by a mishap with a Barbie BBQ set. During her plea hearing last week, she admitted to having caused the burn.

Pittman will get credit for the nearly two years she’s already served.

At the time of her arrest, Pittman, who is married, was pregnant. It has not been made public if the child was born healthy or where it was placed following her imprisonment.

The victim was not identified by police. On her Facebook page, Pittman repeatedly mentions a young girl who appears to be the same age as the victim. In her last public post, a month and a half before her arrest, Pittman wrote, “I’m 3 in a half months pregnant and doing good. Other than [child's name] getting attack by 2 dogs and bit twice the other day she is doing wonderfull.” It’s unclear if the child she is referring to is the victim in this case.

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