Nevada Dem. leader pleads guilty to hitting son

AP News
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Posted: Nov 06, 2009 3:44 PM

A Nevada Democratic Party leader who pleaded guilty to hitting his teenage son and throwing him on the hood of a car has resigned, according to a letter received Friday by a newspaper.

Paul Belt, the party chairman of Douglas County, said in a letter to the Record-Courier that he resigned his post after his "regrettable actions."

He pleaded guilty on Wednesday to a misdemeanor count of domestic battery. He was sentenced to a suspended one-year jail term and ordered to attend counseling.

Belt, 45, was accused of punching his 15-year-old son several times on Oct. 22 when he learned his son was no longer on the boys' junior varsity soccer team.

Witnesses also reported seeing Belt punch and kick his son. Coaches intervened when Belt reportedly threw the boy on the hood of a car.

He told deputies, "I began to yell at my son and lost my cool and punched him with a closed fist about five or six times in his chest, shoulders and back," according to police reports.

In the letter, he apologized to his son, his family and to the people "who had to witness my horrible behavior."

He also said he was not angry at his son.

"It was frustration over a series of incidents with the coaches in a two-week span," Belt wrote.

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Information from: Gardnerville Record-Courier, http://www.recordcourier.com