Tyler man gets 40 years for severely burning child in bathtub
TYLER, Texas (KLTV) - A Tyler man has been sentenced to prison for severely burning his stepchild in a bathtub.
Joshua Tranair Meekings, 27, was charged with first-degree injury to a child after his step son suffered third-degree burns in a bathtub in 2022. Meekings was arrested May 30, 2022, and has since been held in the Smith County Jail on a $1 million bond. On Monday, Meekings was sentenced to 40 years in prison in Judge Taylor Heaton’s court.
Meeking’s sentence was enhanced by his prior convictions for sexual assault and burglary of habitation. When arrested for injuring his step son, Meekings had warrants out for robbery and unlawful possession of a firearm by a felon, though the latter was dismissed. In court Monday, Meekings pleaded guilty on enhancement from his previous charges.
In the original case, an affidavit said that the injured child’s mother came home on May 26, 2022, to find her son wrapped in a towel. When she removed the towel and saw the boy’s injuries, she told Meekings to call 911. According to the child’s babysitter, Meekings had put the boy in a bathtub and turned on the water, then left him to go play video games. Meekings then wrapped the boy in a towel after seeing his burns.
Meekings later stated that the boy had gotten burned by bumping against a stove and spilling water onto himself. CPS said that the injuries were consistent with being dipped in boiling water, and a Dallas doctor who examined the boy said the burns covered 33 to 36% of his body, the majority of which were third degree, and he required multiple surgeries. Deputies who responded to the home checked the water, and said that it was sitting at 140 degrees by the time they arrived.
Despite Meekings saying he left the child alone in the bathtub, the affidavit states it is believed Meekings held the boy down in the bathtub.
Copyright 2023 KLTV. All rights reserved.