A father who fatally punched his five-year-old son over a cheesecake in June 2019 has been sentenced to 20 years in prison.
The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports that Travis Stackhouse, 30, was sentenced Tuesday (June 29) after being convictedin May on charges of first degree homicide in the death of his son, Sir Ameer Stackhouse, and also child neglect, and child abuse. He must also remain on extended supervision for eight years after serving his prison sentence.
Stackhouse faced up to 37 years behind bars. After two days of witness testimony, he pled guilty to a lesser charge of second-degree reckless homicide.
Prosecutors say he beat Sir Ameer because he was angry that his children, including the boy, were eating cheesecake that he had gotten for Father’s Day 2019, when he had only eaten one slice. Stackhouse later admitted that he punched Sir Ameer in the stomach and struck his face with the back of his hand, which had a metal rod in it from surgery.
After hitting his son, Stackhouse went to a bar with his friends until about 2 a.m. When he returned home, his girlfriend called 911 and Sir Ameer was pronounced dead at the scene by paramedics. The child’s autopsy found that his cause of death was blunt force trauma to the abdomen.
According to the The Washington Post, Stackhouse had originally told the police that Sir Ameer had fallen down the stairs while playing with one of his siblings.
Milwaukee County Circuit Judge David Borowski said, prior to sentencing Stackhouse, “It’s hard to know where to start in a case like this because it’s so atrocious.”
The judge continued, “The average person that hears about this case can’t understand how you would beat or punch any living human being as badly as you did in this case – let alone your own child. How you can live with yourself ever for a day – I don’t understand.”
Stackhouse made no comment during his sentencing hearing.