- Associated Press - Wednesday, April 4, 2018

ORANGE CITY, Iowa (AP) - A northwest Iowa man and wife have been sentenced for the beatings of an 11-year-old boy.

Sioux County District Court records show 36-year-old Matthew Spaans was sentenced Monday to four years in prison, and 34-year-old Nina Spaans was given two years of probation and a suspended prison sentence of four years.

Both had pleaded guilty to four counts of child endangerment. Prosecutors dropped several other counts in exchange for their pleas.

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The two live in Hawarden.

Records say that at least three times since September, Matthew Spaans beat his stepson with his hands, a 56-inch sword and another item, severely bruising the boy. The documents say the boy was told to make up stories about his bruises or his next beating would be worse.

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