(Lander, WY) – 27-year-old Riverton man Anthony Long was sentenced to 16-20 years imprisonment for two counts of felony child abuse today, April 14, at a sentencing hearing overseen by the Honorable Judge Condor.
Long received an 8 to 10 year prison sentence for each count, to be served consecutively, totalling 16 to 20 years.
Long faced the two counts after his 24-day-old twin daughters were discovered to have broken bones and other injuries back in November of 2022.
Initially Long pled “not guilty,” but changed to a guilty “cold plea” at his March 2 change of plea hearing.
At that hearing it was determined that Long did indeed cause the injuries to his two daughters, and a Pre Sentence Investigation (PSI) Report was filed ahead of the April 14 sentencing hearing.
At today’s sentencing the prosecution, represented by Patrick LeBrun, argued for the 8 to 10 year sentence for each charge that was ultimately decided upon.
LeBrun opened by sharing the extensive injuries the twins suffered, one of whom who was only taken to the hospital after the injuries of the other child were discovered.
The first daughter who was brought to the hospital reportedly suffered from a broken femur, nostril/earlobe injuries and bruised cheeks, while the second was left with a broken arm, a swollen eye and fractured femur and ribs.
LeBrun went on to describe the difficulty of breaking a femur and the immense pain that comes with that injury, adding that the victims were too young to be able speak for themselves and vocalize their pain.
“A broken femur is torturous,” Lebrun also said after referencing how the injury can even be career ending for professional athletes.
“There is a complete lack of empathy or recognition that they were human beings,” LeBrun went on to tell the Court. “No empathy.”
“He’s trying to make him sound like a monster.”
Following the prosecution’s request for the 8-10 year sentence for each count, the defense took the stand, represented by Jonathan Gerard.
Gerard first invited Bethany Long, Anthony’s stepmother, to address the Court.
“He loves his daughters,” Bethany opened. “He’s trying to make him sound like a monster,” she then said in reference to LeBrun’s comments.
“I don’t think it was on purpose. Things happen and they’re unfortunate. I know he’s not that kind of person.”
Following Bethany’s comments, Gerard went on to echo her sentiments that Long’s actions were unintentional.
“I will go to my grave believing he did not intentionally harm them,” Gerard stated after commenting that he has spent a lot of time with Long, and that he is always more concerned about his daughters than the case itself when they meet.
“His actions will torture Mr. Long the rest of his life.”
Gerard agreed that Long should serve time for his “reckless behavior,” but added that the fact he did not ask for probation and “owned up” to his behavior should account for a slightly reduced minimum sentence.
“He has a life that is worth redeeming,” Gerard concluded.
The defense agreed that a 20 year maximum sentence was appropriate, but requested a minimum sentence of 4 to 5 years for each count, totalling 8 to 10 years.
“I will never forgive myself.”
Judge Conder then invited Long to speak in allocution of his potential sentencing, who addressed his two daughters directly by name.
“I’m so sorry this has happened to you, and that I am the one who did it,” Long told the Court through tears. “Not a day goes by that I don’t think about it. I will never forgive myself.”
“I know you will grow up to be strong independent women like your mother,” Long went on to say, adding, “The true punishment is not the loss of my life, it is the loss of the time with my daughters.”
After hearing from Long himself, Judge Conder then addressed the Court, and opened by commenting about the “gruesome” nature and circumstance of the crime.
Judge Conder stated that he would not label Long as a “monster,” but clarified that he committed “monstrous acts.”
While Judge Conder did acknowledge that Long eventually owning up to his actions was the only reason there was a lightly reduced minimum sentence, he was not as keen to believe that an “accidental” injury would happen twice, to two different victims.
“How does that happen?” Judge Conder asked, soon adding that “logic and common sense dictate that this was violent and outrageously reckless.”
Judge Conder then called Long’s actions “outrageous” and “unbelievable,” and ones that resulted in “serious and life threatening injuries.”
Judge Conder went on to describe a situation in which the victims were harmed by a different party “for perspective,” and posited that there would be immediate community uproar and no defense of that person.
In terms of the PSI report findings on Long, Judge Conder added that Long has a history of substance abuse, and subsequent run-ins with the law.
“I wouldn’t think it is outrageous to suppose that history of substance abuse played a role,” Judge Conder commented before adding that he had no way of knowing if drugs were in use at the time of the incident, and did not intend to directly imply as much
Judge Conder then shared that Long was also charged in a domestic assault and interference incident involving his partner in January of last year, according to the PSI report, and added that Long may show remorse and still love his family, “but he just doesn’t treat them right.”
Following Judge Conder’s address to the Court, Long was ultimately sentenced to 8 to 10 years imprisonment for both charges, to be served consecutively, and totalling 16-20 years.