DEVILS LAKE -- A trial has begun for a Lankin man accused of assaulting and partially paralyzing a 2-year-old child.
Jury selection began Tuesday in Ramsey County District Court for Austin Lee Thorsteinson, 25, who was charged in December 2016 with child neglect or abuse, a Class A felony. He faces up to 20 years in prison.
The charge stems from a late November 2016 incident in which he allegedly admitted to striking a child’s head against a stereo speaker and metal table, according to court documents. The child was taken to the Sanford Children’s Hospital in Fargo to be treated for a severe head injury. Doctors said the child needed emergency surgery to relieve pressure from his brain, had two spots of bleeding on his brain, had other injuries on his back and side and showed signs of paralysis on his left side.
The trial is scheduled through Thursday.