Right out of roll call we were dispatched a call of a “Child abuse in progress”. We collected our equipment for the day, grabbed our war bags and sped off code 3 in our Police car to the location.
After arriving on the scene, we went inside the house to conduct our investigation. My partner spoke with the father as I tried to calm down a little crying girl who was about six years old and being held by her mother. “He hit her with a hanger,” the mother yelled angrily, “She woke him up and he got mad and hit her for that.”
After the little girl warmed up to me and stopped crying I asked her if she could tell me what happened. “I wanted my daddy to play with me, so I woke him up,” she said with her lower lip sticking out and chin down. “He got mad and spanked me with a hanger,” wiping tears from her eyes. “Oh, I’m so sorry,” I said, “can you show me where he spanked you?” She showed me her little legs and I saw at least ten purple welts. “Where is the hanger?” I asked… she took me by the hand into her bedroom and pointed at the floor and said, “He hit me with that hanger but it broke.” There on the floor was a broken white plastic hanger. “That one broke,” she said “so he got another one,” pointing to a metal wire hanger in the closet. I looked and saw in her closet the wire hanger and only two little dresses and my heart sunk as I saw that was all she had to wear every day. I took the hanger for evidence and we walked back into the front room where everyone else was.
Other Officers had also arrived and a female Officer checked the little girl further for injuries and found more welts in the shape of a hanger across her back and buttocks. My partner clicked the handcuffs on the father and said, “You are under arrest for Child abuse.” I took the man and walked him outside to put him into the back of our Police car so we could transport him to jail. “Does it make you feel likea big man to hit such a small little child, you should be ashamed of yourself,” I said disgusted. As I was walking to the car holding the man’s arm, we passed a brick wall. The man tightened up, gritted his teeth and let out a loud war cry, “Ahhhhhh!” and slammed his own forehead into the corner of the brick wall three times really fast causing three large gash wounds. I pulled the man away from the wall so he couldn’t hurt himself anymore, “What the hell are you doing?” I yelled. “I’m sorry, I’m sorry,” the man cried. But I couldn’t help think to myself, “Good, you got what you deserved.” An ambulance had to be called and he was treated at the Hospital for a cracked skull.
I never did find out whatever happened on this case but I will always remember such a sweet innocent little girl who just wanted to play with her daddy and got whipped with a hanger for waking him up.
There is no excuse for child abuse.