No jail time for father of baby attacked by ferret

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KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- A Grain Valley, Mo., man received two years probation Friday for a pet ferret who chewed off seven of his baby son's fingers.

Ryan Waldo, 35, was charged with felony child endangerment, but on Friday, plead to a misdemeanor count of child endangerment. He was originally charged with a felony count where he could have face one to seven years if convicted.

Under his plea deal, Waldo cannot have any contact with his four children. However, FOX 4 has learned Waldo already gave up all parental rights a year ago.

The ferret was a Christmas gift. And it was a few weeks later, in January 2011, that Ryan threw the baby ferret against a wall killing it after he realized it had eaten seven of his baby's fingers.

Police say cell phone records suggest neither mom or dad was home when the attack began in the middle of the night.

"I'm not impressed by the cell phone records and what they showed," defense attorney Dan Miller said.

While Miller believed Waldo's deal was a fair offer, Angela Simpkins of a ferret rescue group is furious the 35-year-old avoided jail time.

"That's horrific for the crime that was committed  When you think about what happened to the child, and to the ferret, and what these parents were doing when this all happened," she said.

Before his son lost his fingers, there appeared to be other incidents.

While on stand, Miller asked Waldo, "you were aware the ferret had bitten some of the other children? You don't have to give names." Waldo said yes, saying he was aware the ferret had "nipped" at them.

Four days before the incident with his baby's fingers, the family had offered to let Simpkins adopt the ferret.

"Their landlords asked me if I would take the ferret and I immediately said 'yes,' and then the people declined to turn over [him]," she said.

Waldo's wife, Carrie, still faces a felony count of child endangerment. Her trial is scheduled for June 3.



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