GRAPHIC: Parents charged in beating death of 6-year-old son, abusing 5 other children, officials say
OSCEOLA COUNTY, Fla. (WKMG) – Parents in Florida are facing numerous charges for brutally abusing their six children, ultimately leading to the death of a 6-year-old boy, officials said.
Osceola County Sheriff Marcos Lopez said Bianca Blaise, 25, and Larry Rhodes, 22, are responsible for the murder of their 6-year-old son.
In a press conference, Lopez said on July 5, deputies responded to the Knights Inn Hotel in Kissimmee after Blaise called them about a drowning. However, when deputies arrived, they discovered the 6-year-old boy had not drowned; the reason he was unconscious was because he was brutally beaten.
Upon investigation, deputies learned that the boy was drinking from the toilet, and his parents became angry about that. Lopez said his mother beat him first, and then his father repeatedly punched the boy with a closed fist.
Following the beating, the 6-year-old boy was on life support in the hospital with a brain bleed, officials said. He died a few days later when he was taken off life support.
Lopez said the investigation revealed that the couple’s five other children, ranging in age from 10 months old to 5 years old, were also abused.
Lopez said the parents would send their children to the corner of the hotel room and beat them with the bottom of a shoe. Detectives were able to match the markings on the children’s bodies with the imprint of the shoe. Evidence photos show the shoe with dried blood on the bottom.
Officials released more evidence photos of the injuries on the children’s bodies, but said some photos are just too graphic to share.
“Injuries on their butt, like things that we can’t show you cause it’s just too traumatizing; it’s traumatizing for us to have seen them and we have the experience,” Detective Suzanne Clouchete said. “Just dead skin cells from being hurt so badly, just horrible, horrible injuries on all of the children.”
Blaise and Rhodes have been charged with murder for the death of the 6-year-old boy. They are also facing charges for abusing the five other children. Both parents are being held without bond.
The sheriff’s office confirmed all five surviving children have been placed together with a foster family.
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