Dalton woman pleads guilty to first-degree child abuse

April 1, 2021 at 12:32 PM ET

DALTON – 30-year-old Natasha Renee Ketchem, also known as Natasha Renee Bowers, pleaded guilty in Whitfield County Superior Court of first-degree child abuse, per a negotiated plea agreement.

Ketchem was accused of burning her stepson with lit cigarettes, causing serious burns to the boy’s body, injuries noticed by his biological mother after a weekend with the father, where Ketchem also lived. These injuries were confirmed by a local hospital to be caused by lit cigarettes.

You can read the full narrative from the incident report here:

The abuse happened at 3728 Edwards Cir SE in Dalton during the first weekend of August, back in 2019.

Ketchem was originally arrested for this abuse just after midnight on New Years Day, 2020, when the Cohutta Police Department served the felony warrant issued by the Whitfield County Sheriff’s Office.

She was released a few months later to await the outcome of her case.

The plea agreement, which was negotiated by Ketchem’s court-appointed attorney and approved by Superior Court Judge William T. Boyett, handed down the following sentence:

  1. 5 years, with the first 9 months to be served in confinement (with credit time served) and the rest on probation
  2. $1,000 fine
  3. 75 hours of community service
  4. Enroll in parenting classes

The full plea agreement can be read here:
PDF of Natasha Ketchem Plea Agreement

Ketchem was booked into the Whitfield County Jail on October 21, 2020, and transferred to prison on February 23, 2021 to finish the remainder of her 9 month sentence.

Facebook post made by Ketchem on the day she began her sentence

We reached out to the Georgia Department of Corrections to obtain an exact release date for Ketchem, but have been unable to get that information.