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Worthington man admits hitting wife, daughter on heads with hammer

WORTHINGTON - Dessalegne Desta, 61, of Worthington, who beat his wife and daughter with blows to the head with a hammer, has reached a plea agreement.

WORTHINGTON - Dessalegne Desta, 61, of Worthington, who beat his wife and daughter with blows to the head with a hammer, has reached a plea agreement.

In exchange for pleading guilty to two counts of first-degree assault causing great bodily harm, two counts of premeditated first-degree attempted murder and an additional count of assault will be dismissed.

According to court documents, Desta at the scene admitted to officers that he had struck both women in the head with a hammer. His wife and daughter were both transported to Sanford Worthington Medical Center for treatment of their injuries. Desta told officers he’d attacked his wife because she had not told him of a pending trip to Ethiopia. He also said he thought she was having an affair, but had no evidence of the accusation. Desta added he was upset with his daughter because she’d taken her mother’s side.

As a result of the attack, both the wife and daughter suffered skull fractures. His daughter also suffered a seizure and lost motor function on one side of her body.

Desta is scheduled for sentencing Nov. 10 and faces up to 20 years in prison on each conviction.

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