PARMA, Ohio (TCD) — A father will spend the rest of his life in prison for beating his 5-year-old son to death with a baseball bat in 2021.
According to a news release from the Cuyahoga County Prosecutor’s Office, on Nov. 9, Matthew Ponomarenko pleaded guilty to one count of aggravated murder, one count of kidnapping, and one count of endangering children. A judge sentenced Ponomarenko to life in prison with eligibility of parole after 45 years.
On March 25, 2021, Ponomarenko called 911 shortly after hitting his son, Jax, numerous times with a baseball bat in their home on Russell Avenue near West 45th Street.
According to WEWS-TV, Ponomarenko told the dispatcher he was hearing voices.
Parma Police responded to the home and apprehended Ponomarenko in the front yard, the prosecutor’s office said. Authorities found the 5-year-old boy in the living room with blunt force injuries to his head and face. He was pronounced dead at the scene.
Cuyahoga County Prosecutor Michael O’Malley said in a statement, “Matthew Ponomarenko brutally beat and killed his own son. With this sentence, I hope that the family can find a modicum of peace and solace. May Jax’s memory forever live in their hearts.”
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