Charlie Bothuell V, the 12-year-old Detroit boy found in his father and stepmother's basement after an 11-day search, told social workers his father abused him by hitting him with a PVC pipe and making him do extreme workouts twice a day.
According to The Washington Post
, the Department of Human Services filed allegations of physical and mental abuse in Wayne County juvenile court this week based on interviews with Charlie himself, his grandmother, and doctors that examined him after he was found.
Part of their filing said that Charlie "has experienced physical abuse by his father [Charlie Bothuell IV] . . . for the entire two years he has resided in Mr. Bothuell's residence . . . The abuse included being physically disciplined with a PVC pipe on his butt, feet, chest, head, thighs, sides and arms . . . He was often too sore to sit or walk."
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The report said that the FBI found the alleged PVC pipe, which Charlie blamed for the scar doctors found on his chest. The PVC pipe had blood on it.
Charlie told caseworkers at Child Protective Services that his stepmother ordered him to the basement because he hadn't completed one of his two daily workouts, which regularly included, "100 pushups, 200 situps, 100 jumping jacks, 25 arm curls with a 25-pound weight, and thousands of revolutions on an elliptical machine," The Associated Press reported
"Shut up, stay quiet and don’t say anything no matter what you hear," Charlie told the caseworkers his stepmother told him. "I know where the sharp knives are . . . I can make you disappear."
He said that he heard police looking for him in the basement, but stayed quiet until they left, at which time he would sneak upstairs for food.
Charlie is currently living with his biological mother. His stepmother's two children, ages 4 and 11 months, have been placed with relatives.
The court hearing to end the couple's parental rights will resume July 17 upon the release of more documents.
Mark Magidson, the couple's lawyer, said, "There's no child abuse. Was there corporal punishment on some occasions? There may have been. Once all the evidence is out, you'll understand why."
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