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The Villages
Wednesday, February 8, 2023

Daughter wants case thrown out after arrest at parents’ home in battle over baby

Gretchen Burke
Gretchen Burke

A daughter wants her case thrown out after her arrest earlier this year at her parents’ home in a battle over a baby.

Gretchen Leigh Burke, 52, was arrested July 25 at her parents’ home in the Village of Belvedere after she allegedly struck her daughter with a police baton.

Burke and her daughter had been in the kitchen of the home on Brighton Drive arguing over the daughter not taking care of a car insurance form, according to an arrest report from the Sumter County Sheriff’s Office. Burke decided to leave with her grandchild, who is the child of her daughter. Burke placed the grandchild in a car seat in the rear of her car. Burke’s daughter got into the passenger seat in an attempt to prevent her mother from leaving.

Burke grabbed a baton from under the driver’s seat and began striking her daughter, the report said.

Burke’s mother, who lives in the Village of Belvedere with her husband, attempted to intervene. Burke’s father was in the house and did not witness the altercation.

Burke’s attorney has filed a motion arguing that his client’s actions were a justifiable use of non-deadly force under Florida statute. The attorney indicated in the motion that Burke’s daughter “unlawfully” entered the vehicle and threatened to forcibly remove the child, who was in Burke’s care at the time. Because Burke was using justifiable force, the charge should be dismissed, the attorney is arguing in the motion.

Burke remains free on $5,000 bond.

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