Dollar General Clerk Whips Boy 25 Times With Belt, Police Say

Thursday, 07 Feb 2013 12:50 PM

By Alexandra Ward

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A Dollar General store clerk in Georgia has been charged with cruelty to children after police say she used a belt to whip an 8-year-old boy who was shopping with his mother.

Emilia Graciela Bell, 39, was arrested Jan. 31 at the Wrightsville store after she admitted striking Logan Ivey a half dozen times, according to ABC News.

It wasn't clear what the boy did to get on Bell's bad side.

"I walked down this aisle and I seen the lady. She started calling me a demon so I said 'I'll show you bad' and I picked up a cookie and I threw it at her," he told USA Today. "So I tried to hide behind the counter and somehow she found me and started whipping me and I didn’t have nowhere to go."

The original charge was aggravated assault, but police boosted it on Monday after surveillance footage showed Bell hitting the boy 16 to 18 more times than was initially thought, ABC News said.

"There were two different angles from different cameras in the store," Assistant Sheriff Bill Thompson told ABC News. "They'd only watched the first when they arrested Ms. Bell. After finding out another camera had caught it, you could see her striking the child 16 to 18 more times."

Cowering under the counter in the video, the boy was hit on the back with the belt, police said.

"I felt like I had five needles sticking in me. It really hurt," the boy told USA Today. "I was screaming 'Mama.' I was crying real bad. Nobody should have that kind of torture."

Bell was unavailable for comment.

Bell posted $5,000 bond on Feb. 1, but has yet to enter a plea, Wrightsville police said. The case has been transferred to Georgia Superior Court.

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