Mom caught on tape beating child enters not guilty plea

Published On: Feb 11 2013 12:37:01 PM HST   Updated On: Feb 11 2013 12:42:37 PM HST

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Christina Marie Hawkins, 26, of Arkoma, appeared in court today in Leflore County. Hawkins, who faces felony child abuse charges, entered a not guilty plea. She is out on a $20,000 bond and her court date is set for March 12.

Hawkins was caught on tape hitting her daughter several times and holding her hand over the girl’s mouth who is crying and screaming. Hawkins is charged with felony child abuse. The cell phone video, shot by Hawkins boyfriend, who told police he witnessed the abuse.

Court documents show that Rickey Leon Griffith, 36, also of Arkoma, told investigators said he recorded the video months ago, but did not report the incident to police. Griffith is being charged with enabling child abuse and obstruction. His court appearance is set for March 6.

Hawkins said "Yeah, it looks like that's what happened in the video but that's not what actually happened, I would never abuse my kids like they're saying I am...I've never hit them like that, I've never left any bruises on my children at all."

She said she was having a breakdown when the video was taken.

At the time of the abuse, which occurred at their home, Hawkins' daughter was 2-years-old. The child is currently in DHS custody.



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