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      Child abuse suspect in court

      A Gladstone man was in court Tuesday, accused of abusing his girlfriend's four-year-old son last October. The hearing was in Delta County Circuit Court.

      Twenty-three-year-old Allen Joseph Brunette is charged with first degree child abuse, domestic violence-third offense, and being a habitual offender. Brunette's prior acts of domestic violence against family members and ex-girlfriends will be admissible if the case goes to trial.

      "This evidence is extremely important to show evidence of intent and capability although under the statute, that's not necessarily required," said the prosecutor.

      Brunette will be back in circuit court on February 8. At that time he'll either plead or be set for trial. The child is home with his mother and has recovered from the injuries.