Harriman couple charged with aggravated child abuse, assault of 6 children plead not guilty

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HARRIMAN, Tenn. (WATE) – A couple in Harriman face a slew of aggravated abuse charges of six children, according to a grand jury indictment.

Randall Ridenour, 54, and Michelle Ridenour, 48, of Harriman have been charged with 17 counts of aggravated child abuse, seven counts of aggravated child neglect and five counts of aggravated assault. The two plead not guilty in an arraignment hearing on Monday, October 26.

The alleged abuses involve six children, ages 6-14, and occurred between Jan. 1, 2018, and June 13 of this year.

According to the list of charges in the indictment, the victims sustained severe bruising from being whipped by a belt. The charges also allege the couple knowingly treated and neglected the victims, “in such a manner as to inflict injury, and the abuse was especially heinous, atrocious or cruel or involved the infliction of torture to the victim.”

The five counts of aggravated assault listed involve both strangulation or attempted strangulation and the use or display of a deadly weapon, according to court documents.

They are set to appear in court on Friday, Dec. 18.

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