Court of Appeals Upholds Conviction of Roosevelt Park Woman in Torture of Infant Son

Tiffany Nicole Lang’s conviction and sentencing for the August 2010 torture of her infant son will stand, according to the Michigan Court of Appeals. Lang was convicted by Muskegon County 14th Circuit Chief Judge William C. Marietti of torture and first-degree child abuse. The defendant was sentenced to 13 to 25 years for torture, and 10 to 15 years for first-degree child abuse to be served concurrently.

In August of 2010, a Roosevelt Park police officer went to Lang’s home on a call that news reports say was unrelated to the torture. Upon arriving at the home, Lang began to cry and confessed to the officer that she had struck the child; she then recanted her story and claimed he had fallen on the floor. The police officer called an ambulance after seeing the injuries the 4-week-old baby had suffered.

Medical personnel testified at trial that the defendant had admitted at the emergency room that she had attempted to suffocate the baby, swung him numerous times against a closet door, and performed a sexual act on the baby. Personnel testified that at the time Lang made these comments, she did not appear to be delusional. The defendant was evaluated by mental health professionals and hospitalized for a period, as she did demonstrate symptoms of mental illness. At trial, she asserted an insanity defense; the judge determine in both charges that Lang was “guilty but mentally ill.”

In her appeal, Lange argued that her confessions at the hospital should not have been permitted at trial because they were involuntary due to the fact that she was exhausted, impaired, and mentally ill. She also held that her sentencing guidelines were improperly scored too high by the judge.

The appeals court opinion revealed numerous injuries which were based on the defendant’s trial transcript; these injuries included broken legs, potential burns in the genital area, skull fractures, and broken ribs which were partially healed, among other fractures. The appeals court disagreed with both of Lang’s arguments, ruling that her conviction and sentencing would stand.

Individuals who have been convicted of a crime should know that there may be further options, and that a prison sentence is not necessarily the end. It may be possible to appeal the conviction or sentence, depending on the facts of your case. A skilled Michigan criminal appeals attorney can review the details of your case to determine whether an appeal may be the appropriate legal route to take.

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