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  • Writer's pictureBill Raines

Jury Selection begins today in Trial of Scott Blattert Jr in child abuse case

LAWRENCE COUNTY - FEBRUARY 21, 2023 - Jury selection begins today in two trials, one being a civil trial in Lawrence County Circuit Court and the second being held in Lawrence County Superior Court I with Judge John Plummer III presiding over the trial of Scott Blattert Jr.

Scott Blattert Jr. is being represented by Defense Attorney John D. Boren and Justin T. Boren from Martinsville, Indiana.

Blattert, is facing charges of strangulation, Level 3 felony, aggravated battery, Level 3 felony, three counts of domestic battery resulting in moderate bodily injury, Level 6 felony, and five counts of battery causing injury to a person under 14, Level 5 felony.

Scott Blattert Jr. and his wife Cherry had their nine children removed from their home.

The Indiana State Police and Indiana Department of Child Services conducted an investigation when Blattert was accused of abusing his children by punching, elbowing, and strangling them as a form of punishment.

Interviews were conducted, and a search warrant obtained and executed at a home on Armstrong Station Road on November 1, 2019.

A video tape was shown of Scott Blattert hitting one of the couple's girl's with a belt approximately 25 times. The video was just one of many pieces of evidence obtained by investigators at the time.

Following Scott Blattert arrest another child aged 15 at the time; was interviewed at a child advocacy center in Bloomington. The child telling investigators that their parent's discipline with industrial grade glue sticks which are used in glue guns.

The child said the sticks were hidden on top of the fireplace mantle and when the family expected a visit from the Department of Children Services the glue sticks were hidden in Scott and Cherry's bedroom. Scott had determined after experimenting with wooden spoons and dowel rods that the glue sticks caused the most pain and left the least number of markings.

The child said that Scott and Cherry told the children that Department of Children Services work against religious people. The family moved from one home to another because a DCS worker lived nearby according to an affidavit.

The children were homeschooled, and Cherry handled the discipline of " minor accidents" or " behavior issues" by striking the children with the glue sticks. Cherry kept a list of the issues and gave it to Scott when he gets home from work, and Scott then would hit the children with glue sticks or a belt, according to the affidavit.

Scott slammed the children against the wall because they were not behaving during "Cherry's religious speech" and he choked one of the children until she could not breath.

Cherry reportedly would photograph the injuries and markings with a camera she kept in the couple's bedroom.

The affidavit said the couple warned the children not to speak with the Department of Children Services about the abuse " because it would ruin the whole family."

During one visit by DCS one of the children told the investigator too much information and Scott got his belt to " deal with it," and he struck two of the children repeatedly as he yelled that they were going to " ruin the whole family."

One child kept a diary of the abuse and hid it inside her mattress the affadavit said.

Blattert attempted to use the Indiana Religious Freedom Act as a defense, stating that physical punishment of children was outlined in the bible in the references to " Rod of Correction". " It is described as the Rod of Correction and a rod is an abstract form. It can be exactly a rod, or it is the authority of the father to oversee the family and to administer discipline as he sees fit," according to a brief filed in the appellate court by Blattert and attorney David Smith.

The Indiana Court of Appeals upheld Lawrence County Superior Court I Judge John Plummer III ruling that struck down Blattert's defense on this case. The Indiana Court of Appeals ruling that the Indiana Religious Freedom Act did not apply to this case.

Cherry's jury trial is scheduled for May 17, 2023, who faces charges of Invasion of privacy, neglect of a dependent resulting in bodily injury, and domestic battery.

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