Spring Valley

The boyfriend of a Spring Valley woman whose 18-month-old son died of a skull fracture was sentenced Wednesday to six years in state prison.

Wesley Howland III, 33, of Spring Valley also received a $1,000 fine from San Diego Superior Court Judge Herbert Exarhos.

Howland pleaded guilty Sept. 15 to voluntary manslaughter in the May 18 death of Justin Jaffe, son of Sally Jaffe, 31, who pleaded guilty to felony child abuse.

Jaffe was placed on five years’ probation and ordered to spend 270 days in jail. She was given credit for 157 days already served and told not to associate with Howland.


Deputy Dist. Atty. Harry Elias said the boy suffered a 4-inch lateral skull fracture and had 54 bruises on his body.

Howland’s attorney, Elliot Lande, unsuccessfully urged a sentence of probation, saying Howland’s problems stem from alcohol abuse.

“This is a tragic, tragic occurrence. The defendant has accepted responsibility by his plea,” Lande said, adding that the bruises on the boy’s body resulted from Howland’s trying to administer CPR to revive him and that another child had hit the boy with a hammer.

Elias responded by saying the bruises were not from CPR and that the other child had hit the boy with a hammer in the foot.


In making her plea, Jaffe acknowledged she should not have left her son in the care of her boyfriend.