A Nebraska judge has sentenced a man to up to 52 years in prison for repeatedly hanging a 2-year-old by the neck until she choked and lost consciousness. The little girl, who survived, is the daughter of the man’s ex-girlfriend. David J. Coleman, 38, strangled her twice on December 14, videotaping his actions then blaming meth for the attacks. “It has changed this child’s life in ways we may never know,” a local prosecutor said. “How she survived this torture is a mystery. But she did.”
The 2-year-old’s mom stumbled across one of the videos while scrolling through Coleman’s phone on December 17. Horrified, she watched Coleman wrap a scarf around her daughter’s neck and hang from her a shelving unit. After the woman alerted police, detectives discovered a second video where Coleman strangled the girl by a scarf in a car until she turned “red and blue in the face.” One veteran prosecutor called it “as disturbing a child abuse case as we’ve ever seen.” A judge noted Coleman’s extensive criminal record, including an earlier case of abuse where a child ended up with broken bones and burns.