Joshua Charles Paul Sullivan Jr.
May 16, 2013 - September 19, 2014


On February 25, 2015, I was watching the Steve Wilkos show. The topic was a seven day old baby boy named Joshua Sullivan Jr.. Joshua was in a foster home and his mother was on the show trying to prove that she was not the one who was responsible for her son being hurt and she was in fact saying that Joshua's father, Joshuah Sullivan Sr., who I will call Josh in this story to avoid confusion, was already in prison for the injuries to this little Angel since he was the one who had hurt him.

Josh had been 18 years old when he was left alone to care for his son in May of 2013. Josh said that the baby would not stop crying and he became frustrated with him so he shook him. On May 22, Joshua's grandparents saw that he had a swollen left eye and the next day, they saw that his right eye was also swollen. At Mary Bridge Children's Hospital, doctors notified the Police and charges were filed against Josh for the injuries to his son. Injuries to this precious baby boy included bruising around his mouth and on his left cheekbone, his lip was bleeding, he was bleeding from his umbilical cord, bruised on his left forearm, the middle of his back and on his left ear as well as subdural hemorrhage and cerebral edema. Joshua was able to survive these injuries for a while, though he did end up dying later while in foster care.

A Police interview revealed that Josh admitted that his frustration with his son had grown while he was feeding him at about 3:00 a.m.:

"You think you shook him"
Detectives

Josh did not give a verbal response, but he did shake his head admitting that he had shaken his son. When asked how long he had shaken the baby, Josh responded that it hadn't been for a long time, just while he was walking up and down the stairs. Josh said that the head of the baby had also been hit on the wall and he was fussy. Josh was not arrested at first, but further investigation caused an arrest warrant to be issued. Josh could not be arrested right away since he could not be found until someone saw him on the news and contacted Police to let them know where he was and Josh  was arrested and charged with one count of first degree child assault with aggravating factors. In July of 2013, Court Commissioner Meagan Foley entered a not guilty plea at the arraignment and it was established that should he make bail, Josh would not be able to visit his son or Amanda.
ad more here: http://blog.thenewstribune.com/crime/2013/07/03/tacoma-man-pleads-not-guilty-to-harming-his-newborn-son/#storylink=cpy

Amanda Kassabaum is the mother of Joshua and fiance of Josh, said that about one week after he was born, she noticed that her son had an injury:

"I saw his left eye was swollen and I didn't think anything about it. I thought
he scratched the inside of his eye"

Amy Owens works at the Seattle Children's Hospital said this of babies who have been shaken:

"There is no safe amount of shaking or rough handling of a baby"

Amy Owens works to educate all new parents in through the Prevention Advocacy and Outreach Program:

"The main goal is to encourage all the birthing hospitals in our state to
implement a prevention program called the Period Of Purple Crying"

The extent of Joshua's injuries was not immediately known, it wasn't apparent if he would have permanent brain damage or not even with brain surgery having been done:

"They don't know if he's going to have any medical problems, be blind or
deaf or anything, but I know I'll be able to take care of him if they ever
let me have him back"
Amanda Kassabaum

Amanda defended Josh from the start saying that from the moment they went home from the hospital, she never saw him get frustrated or being rough with Joshua:

"We've had some arguments, but he's never laid his hands on me.
If he ain't gonna lay his hands on me, why is he gonna lay his hands
on a seven day year old baby, for fussing"
(That's not a typo, she said seven day year old)


Amanda said she planned to be in court to support Josh because she didn't believe he had hurt their son, she said she loved him to death but if she found out he did it, she hoped he would rot. She never showed up for any of the court hearings. In January of 2014, Josh plead guilty to assault of a child in the first degree.  A three year old sibling of Joshuah's told Police that Josh got a "mean look" on his face and then said "daddy squeezed the baby". Sentencing was set for February 14, 2014:

"Nothing is more incomprehensible than adults harming children. The child
is receiving good medical care and appears to be recovering, but we won't
know the full affect of this senseless assault for years"
Prosecutor - Mark Lindquist

In February of 2014, Joshua Charles Paul Sullivan, who was 19 years old at the time, was found guilty and sentenced to 16 and 1/2 years in prison for causing the injuries to his son Joshuah.

On the Steve Wilkos show, Amanda was there to prove that accusations made by Josh's brother, Justin, were false. Justin claimed that Josh had told him that he was not the one who hurt Joshua, that he had covered up for Amanda so that she wouldn't lose her other children. Justin said that Josh told him that Amanda had hit the baby in the mouth, punched him, she squeezed him really hard and thrown him in the floor and then picked him up and put him in the crib, shoved a bottle in his mouth and then walked away. Amanda took a lie detector test. Justin said that Josh had found out that the baby he thought was his, was actually the child of another brother, who was older.

Justin said on the show that he had been nice to Amanda for the purpose of getting her to come to the show, which had been his idea. Amanda came out yelling and cussing saying that this man had not visited this child and spent little time with him though she said that she was also messing around with this brother. Amanda said on the show that she didn't take care of the baby the way Josh did, that she was busy taking care of the other two children in the home. Amanda said she was so tired that it was hard to take care of the baby:

"Moms do wanna to sleep when they already been taking care of two other kids"

Steve brought up that she had gone to visit people and she said she had visited her dad.

Amanda said that she had a visit with her children the following week after not having seen them for about six months. Steve Wilkos said that after she admitted to having done Meth that same week, she probably would NOT be seeing her children for a visit to which she said she was getting into a drug program. Amanda admitted that she and Josh had smoked Marijuana in the past and the brother said he knew that to be the only drug they ever did.

Questions asked of Amanda during her lie detector test were the following:

Did you cause any of the injuries to your infant son when he was seven days old - You answered no.
Did you ever physically abuse your infant son - You said no.
Did you witness anyone else abusing your infant son - You answered no.
Do you know for sure who caused any of those injuries at the time, to your infant son - You Said no.


Before the results were read, Amanda said that she had resorted to doing Meth because she was upset about her son. She told Steve Wilkos that she had stopped doing Meth and then later admitted that she had done it the previous Friday. Having done Meth, this meant that her lie detector results would not be accurate. The results to all of the questions asked of her was "Significant reactions". Steve brings out Dan, the man who did the test and after some discussion says that he believes Josh is not guilty of what happened and what he is in prison for. Steve asks Dan to explain the results of the test.

"Significant reactions is what occurs when a person is deceptive and I usually
translate that into deception indicated meaning that the person is not being
truthful. However, there's an issue with her test. She tested positive and confessed
to using Meth amphetamines and Marijuana just days before this test. Meanwhile
she was booked on this show for three weeks so she knew that she wasn't supposed
to use drugs. So, because she's testing positive, I can't call her decision properly
under polygraph standards by saying that she's deceptive because she's impaired.

Dan said that the drugs could have been an attempt to mess with the results of the test. Steve said to Amanda that she had lied and told them she was clean for a month before the show and she denied saying that to which he told her that they would hot have brought her on the show if she was doing drugs. Dan had more to say:

"So Steve, not being able to say under the polygraph that she is deceptive
or not, I can tell you that she had significant reactions to those questions. So
I utilized additional credibility assessment tools that you know, as a Police
Officer, utilized, cause not everybody takes a polygraph, but you get a
forensic interview.  Much like what you do, Steve, you picked this up right
away that she was deceptive. She failed her structured, scored forensic
interview, which means that she's deceptive. I also had her write out a
statement indicating what the situation is about and how she would explain
it and utilizing what's known as Scientific Content Analysis or SCAN, um,
I forensically examine that statement and deemed her deceptive as well"

Amanda said she did not go to court because she didn't want to see Josh and Steve said that it only makes sense for a guilty person not to show up. Amanda wanted a new test and Steve said he would love her to be clean for three months and then take a test. Steve asked her how much time he was supposed to waste on her:

"The sad thing about this is, the only two people who know for sure
what happened, is your brother and her and nobody else will never
know the truth, not even the little boy that this happened to because
he's too young and he's too damaged to ever remember. And your son
will never, ever have a normal day on this planet, never. He's never
going to enjoy a day of running, laughing, seeing, hearing, the most
common things that we all take for granted. Your son will never ever
get to enjoy that and somebody did that to him and that somebody, I'm
gonna throw off my stage right now...get the hell outta here"

Steve suggested to Justin that he should tell the Police what happened on the show and that he should try to get them to re-open the investigation taking a look. The foster mother who had been caring for Joshua called and gave Steve an update about what happened to him:

"After the show, Amanda never came to see him again, even during his
last few days of his life. She had countless chances, but never came.
 In September 2014, he passed away in my arms from the injuries.
Even though there is someone in jail for this, I feel in my heart,
Amanda had something to do with this. This has hurt me so much
that after 23 years of fostering, I handed in my license. Steve, I
don't want them getting away with this. We love him so much, he
didn't deserve to die like this. It's very important to me and my
family that justice is served.
Carol

I have done searches and am unable to find anything related to Amanda facing any charges for the death of Joshua.



Sadly, a search for an obituary turned up only this:

Joshua Charles Paul Sullivan Jr Obituary

Date of Birth: Thursday, May 16th, 2013
Date of Death: Friday, September 19th, 2014

Funeral Home: Piper-Morley with Oakwood Hill pipermorleymellingerfh.com 5436 S. Puget Sound Ave. Tacoma, Washington, UNITED STATES 98409

Obituary: No obituary found.

What is listed above was found here:  http://www.obitsforlife.com/obituary

This page was created on February 24, 2015
Death Occurred in the state of Washington

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