Osceola Mills man pleads guilty in child assault case

An Osceola Mills man accused of assaulting his 3-week-old daughter pleaded guilty Wednesday morning in Clearfield County Court.

Aaron Mills, 33, is charged with eight counts of aggravated assault, two counts of aggravated indecent assault, endangering the welfare of children, criminal conspiracy, possession of drug paraphernalia, four counts of simple assault and recklessly endangering another person. His trial scheduled for mid-December has been canceled, according to a court employee.

The charges stem from an investigation into the child’s injuries, which were noted after the child was taken to a doctor in March for a bad diaper rash.

Doctors found the child had two broken legs, a cracked rib, lacerations and abrasions on her face and body, according to testimony at a preliminary hearing.

Additional testimony at the preliminary hearing revealed that the child’s mother, Stephanie McGuire, 23, and Mills were the only two people caring for the child. After a search warrant was executed on their home and car, police found a garbage bag that contained three blankets, a pair of men’s boxer shorts, a man’s long-sleeve shirt, a baby outfit and a pink baby’s hat all with blood stains on them.

During an interview with police, Mills denied knowledge of the baby’s injuries, other than the diaper rash.

Mills told investigators that the baby had “explosive diarrhea” and was up several times each night. He allegedly admitted that he may have grabbed both feet of the girl to lift her when he was changing her. Mills said he almost lifted the baby completely off the changing mat and realized he hurt the baby.

In September, McGuire signed a plea agreement in her case, with a condition that she testify against Mills.

She is pleading guilty to a felony charge of endangering the welfare of children, criminal conspiracy, simple assault, recklessly endangering another person, and possession of drug paraphernalia, said District Attorney William A. Shaw Jr. at the time her plea was signed. Originally she was also charged with two counts of felony aggravated assault.

She will serve no less than 10 years of probation or parole in addition to any jail time, Shaw said. McGuire has been incarcerated in the county jail since March, according to court records. She is scheduled to be sentenced Dec. 19.

When asked for more details on the Mills plea, Shaw would not comment. Mills will be scheduled for sentencing within 90 days.