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Donora man accused of assaulting daughter, 4

| Saturday, July 12, 2014, 12:01 a.m.
James S. Deshong

A Donora man is accused of grabbing his 4-year-old daughter by the throat, then telling her to lie to police.

James S. Deshong, 48, of 948 Meldon Ave. was arrested Thursday after a neighbor called police to report the alleged abuse.

Police said Deshong's children, including a 2-year-old girl, were covered in dirt and living in filthy conditions, according to a criminal complaint.

Donora police were called to the house about 7 p.m. after the unidentified neighbor saw Deshong grab the girl by the throat on the front porch and put her in a corner, the complaint states.

After Officer Michael Parry went to the residence, he contacted Washington County Children and Youth Services caseworker Verna Mineard.

Deshong denied grabbing his daughter and told police it was an “outright lie,” the complaint states.

Two neighbors reportedly told police they heard Deshong tell the 4-year-old, “if you ever hit your sister again, I'm getting rid of you.” The complaint states Deshong was referring to the girl's 2-year-old sister.

Parry said the 4-year-old initially told him “Daddy never hit me.” But after he explained to the child that the police are the “good guys,” and they were there to help her, the girl allegedly said her “daddy told her to lie to police,” the report states.

Asked again if her dad ever grabbed her, the child reportedly said, “Yes, and it hurt,” as she demonstrated how he grabbed her by the neck.

Both girls appeared to be “very dirty,” wearing little clothing, and their skin “was blackened by the dirt and dust that accumulated on them,” the criminal complaint states.

The house and porch were infested by flies and dirty dishes were piled in the sink, police said.

It's unclear whether the children were removed from the home.

Deshong was charged with two counts of endangering the welfare of children and single counts of simple assault, recklessly endangering another person and disorderly conduct.

He was arraigned in Night Court early Friday morning by Magisterial District Judge Curtis Thompson of Bentleyville. Thompson sent him to the Washington County Correctional Facility in lieu of $30,000 bond. He was still in jail as of late Friday.

Deshong faces a preliminary hearing 1:15 p.m. July 24 before Magisterial District Judge Mark Wilson in Monongahela.

Stacy Wolford is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 724-684-2640 or at