Helena couple charged with child abuse due in court June 19

Published 3:58 pm Tuesday, May 30, 2017

By GRAHAM BROOKS / Staff Writer

COLUMBIANA–A Helena couple that was arrested on Nov. 14, 2016 and charged with aggravated family child abuse after allegedly torturing, willfully abusing and maltreating their 14-year-old adopted son are set to appear in court again on June 19 for an arraignment and bond reduction hearing, according to court documents.

Richard Kelly

Earlier this year, Richard Hobson Kelly and Cynthia Rogers Kelly of Helena were both denied a bond reduction and the charges were bound over to a grand jury, as a result of a preliminary hearing the afternoon of Feb. 8.

Cynthia Kelly

Richard and Cynthia Kelly have each been indicted on the Class B felony child abuse charge.

The Kelly’s allegedly, “Did on or between November 1, 2014, to November 12, 2016, torture, willfully abuse, cruelly beat, or otherwise willfully maltreat said child over the period of two years to a closed off room in the basement with a locked door for 23 hours a day with limited to no access to social interaction; further, that was only allowed a box spring to sleep on; further, that was only fed one meal a day and that food and nourishment was withheld to the point that the victim was admitted on the date of Nov. 12, 2016, to the hospital suffering from extreme malnourishment, shock, hypothermia and dehydration to the point of near death and presented with abrasions on his knees, lips, ears and ankles, did such act which caused serious physical injury.”

Recent court filings indicate that Cynthia is due in court for an arraignment on June 19 at 8:30 a.m.

Richard Kelly’s defense attorney has filed another motion seeking a reduction to the bond of $1 million.

Jarred C. Welborn, Richard Kelly’s defense attorney, filed a renewed motion citing the defendant’s longtime Shelby County residency, no prior misdemeanor or felony arrests, the current bond amount exceeding the recommended bond schedule guidelines of $5,000 to $30,000 for a Class B felony and more as reasons to reduce bond.

Richard Kelly is scheduled to appear in court for a bond reduction hearing on June 19, at 9 a.m.