Storms possible this weekend

Group fights to free abused mother who failed to report child abuse

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OKLAHOMA CITY -- A national women's rights group fights to free an Oklahoma mother sentenced to 30 years in prison for failing to protect her children from an abusive boyfriend.

Tondalo Hall's legal fight began along N.W. 10th St. at her apartment in 2004.

That's when prosecutors say two young kids suffered serious physical abuse.

In 2006 in Oklahoma County court, Robert Braxton Jr. pleaded guilty to breaking the ribs and femur of the couple's 3-month-old daughter.

Judge Ray Elliott sentenced Braxton to serve 10 years, eight of which were suspended.

While prosecutors did not present evidence in court that Hall actually harmed the kids herself, she pleaded guilty to four counts of permitting child abuse.

Only this time, Judge Elliott sentenced the mother to 30 years in prison...time she continues to serve.

"If she got a sentence, it should be the same as the abuser," said Kylie Shelley with UltraViolet. "He got 2 years. I don't think that's fair. It's a 28 year disparity."

Shelley's group called UltraViolet created an online petition.

They're asking the state's Pardon and Parole Board to commute the remainder of Hall's sentence.

The protesters say Hall has repeatedly claimed Braxton physically abused her, and the disparity in sentences unfairly blames the victim of domestic violence.

"She failed to protect her children from abuse, which I don't think should be a crime, if you're suffering domestic abuse yourself," said Shelley.

The Pardon and Parole Board has not formally said when they plan to take up the case.

The board could consider the issue at its meeting in May.

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