By Ed Runyan
Before being sentenced to 10 years in prison for killing his girlfriend’s father, Jarred Watson, 29, blamed the victim for attacking him first with a broom handle and being an “uncontrollable drunk.”
Watson beat George L. Myers, 57, to such an extent that he broke eight ribs, the bones in his face, and Myers had a lacerated spleen and liver, Judge Ronald Rice of Trumbull County Common Pleas Court said.
“How do you break every rib in his body in self-defense?” Judge Rice asked Watson in reply.
“I didn’t mean to do it, your honor,” Watson said. “I hit him a couple times and kicked him a few times and stuff like that,” then hit him with the broom handle.
Myers was found dead May 19 in the backyard of the Dickey Avenue Northwest house that Watson, his girlfriend Cassie Myers and George Myers shared.
Watson was indicted on murder and felonious assault but was allowed in September to plead guilty to voluntary manslaughter, which carries a lesser penalty than murder.
Also speaking to Judge Rice was Nancy Carnahan, ex-wife of George Myers, who read a statement on behalf of her children.
“The last time we seen our dad, we couldn’t even kiss him goodbye on his face. It would’ve collapsed in if we touched it,” the letter said. “Every bone in his face broke for the second time because of Jarred.”
Exhibits were entered into the record regarding an earlier incident in which Watson had beaten Myers — about three years before the fatal beating. Watson admitted to Judge Rice he also injured Myers that time.
“He was an uncontrollable drunk. Nobody could handle him,” Watson said of George Myers. He and Myers had both been drinking the night of the Myers’ death.
“He came at me with a broom or something. He hit me in the back and ... knocked me down. I got up and I half way defended myself. I shouldn’t have went that far with it and all that, and I truly am sorry and stuff and I think about it all the time, every minute,” Watson said.
After the hearing, Carnahan showed photographs she said were of Myers’ face after the beating showing him bruised and swollen. Judge Rice noted that Myers weighed about 130 pounds, and Watson is over 200 pounds.