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Tai-Ling Gigliotti convicted of torturing teenage adopted son

10:26 PM, May 10, 2010   |    comments
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Brooksville, Florida -- A Spring Hill woman has been found guilty of torturing her teenage adopted son.

Tai-Ling Gigliotti was found guilty of two counts of aggravated child abuse.

Officials say the teen had been held captive and beaten in his own home for at least two years.  He was kept in the bathroom, with the window boarded up and the door screwed shut from the outside.

Last year, the boy, then 16, broke out of the bathroom and escaped to a neighbor's house.

Gigliotti's boyfriend took a plea deal for his part in the abuse and later testified against Gigliotti during the trial.

Gigliotti herself took the stand during her trial, where she claimed she was only trying to keep the troubled teenager under control.  She testified that any physical harm to her son during that week of February 2009 was in self-defense.

The only time Gigliotti showed any emotion during the trial was during closing statements on Monday morning.

Prosecutor Brian Trehy said to the jury, "[The teen] was living like a prisoner of war.  If he ate so much as a morsel of food, it was considered a crime and caused you to be locked up in the bathroom or beaten with a stick."

After deliberating for only three hours, the jury came back with a verdict.

Guilty - on both counts of aggravated child abuse.

Gigliotti sat stoic as she heard her fate.

Outside of the courtroom on Monday, 10 Connects caught up with defense attorney Jimmy Brown who said, "When you have a child committing arson, who is burning down part of your house; who is stabbing your vehicle with screwdrivers; who is masturbating in the open; who is attacking you naked with an erection and you cannot do anything about it, that sends a very dangerous message."

But Assistant State Attorney Trehy responded with this, "We hope that the community understands now, that crimes of domestic abuse, those involving children, in particular, are just not acceptable."

Gigliotti will be back at the Hernando County Courthouse on June 9th for her sentencing, when her attorney says he will ask for a lesser sentence than the full 60 years in prison.

Her fiance, Angelo Anton, faced the same two charges of aggravated child abuse earlier this year and he only got five years probation.  Then again, that was in exchange for his testimony against Gigliotti.

Gigliotti's attorney says at that time, he will also announce their appeal.

Erica Pitzi, 10 Connects News

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