An Imperial, Missouri woman could spend a year in prison for beating her son's alleged heroin dealer with a baseball bat.
It took a Jefferson County jury about two hours Tuesday night to find 54 year old Sherrie Gavan guilty of third-degree misdemeanor assault.
Gavan admits that in December 2011, she hit Josh Loyd with a bat after seeking him out to tell him to stay away from her son, Clayton. Her attorney had argued "self-defense," saying Gavan had believed the teen was going to hit her with a brick.
Gavan says she just did what any parent would have done, especially a parent who knows what heroin does to their child. "It's like my husband said, there’s two ways out: you stop or you die," she said. "And I did not want to bury my son. I could not bury my son."
Gavin says even though she could go to prison, she'd do it again, because her son is alive, graduating high school with straight "A's" and getting ready for college.
Police say the victim had just finished shopping when he returned to his truck around noon Thursday to find someone driving off with it.
Maplewood Police Detective Matt Nibor says the truck's owner chased after him, jumping into the bed of the pickup. "The truck then started traveling at a high rate of speed down Hanley Road and then entered onto Highway 40 eastbound."
Detective Nibor says the victim broke out a window on the truck and the suspect pulled over. Then the suspect threw the victim out of the truck bed, beat him and left him along the roadside.
The victim is expected to recover.
Police are looking for the suspect and the stolen 1992 GMC Seirra with Missouri plates reading 1HN-375. The truck is maroon, with a darker maroon hood, white front fenders and a broken rear window.
The suspect is described as a light skin African American Male in his early 20s. He is about 5’7″ and weighs about 150 lbs. He was last seen wearing a black t-shirt and blue jeans.
Anyone with information call the Maplewood Police Department at 314-646-3621.
A passersby found the victim in the garage about 12:30 p.m. and called 9-1-1.
The victim was injured, but her condition is unknown.
Police would only say, her attacker was a man.
St. Mary's officials released a statement that said, "The safety of our patients, visitors and employees is a top priority. We are working closely with the Richmond Heights Police Department to investigate this unfortunate situation."
Anyone with information is asked to call the Richmond Heights Police Department at 314-645-3000.