Woman who called radio station pleads guilt in recorded tirade against grandchild
By DAVID SIMPSON
Atlanta Journal-Constitution Staff Writer
What you say to your children can break the law, as a DeKalb County woman learned when her tirade against her granddaughter was picked up on a tape-recorded phone call to a radio station.
Venus Taylor, 55, pleaded guilty Monday to child cruelty, even though investigators found no evidence that she had physically abused her three grandchildren. DeKalb Assistant District Attorney Rachelle Carnesale, who has specialized in child abuse cases for nine years, said Taylor was the first defendant she had prosecuted only for verbal abuse.
Taylor, who spent 19 days in jail after her arrest in November 2002, was sentenced to six years on probation by Superior Court Judge Clarence Seeliger.
Taylor was arrested after radio station WALR-FM (Kiss 104.1) gave police a tape of a call in which Taylor could be heard screaming at a wailing child, who turned out to be her granddaughter, then 13.
The tape continued for several minutes, and the child later said that was only part of a tirade that lasted for about 15 minutes. It was not clear how the call was placed to the radio station. Police traced it to Taylor's home.
On the tape, Taylor used vulgar names, threatened to beat the child and said she wished the child had been left in a foster home.
A pounding noise could be heard, but Carnesale said the child reported that was the sound of Taylor striking a table.
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