- Mother and her sex-offender partner face aggravated child abuse charges
- Alleged abuse discovered after they took baby to hospital with broken leg
- They have been jailed pending trial and their children taken into care
By PAUL THOMPSON
PUBLISHED: 09:18 EST, 26 March 2013 | UPDATED: 10:23 EST, 26 March 2013
A couple are facing aggravated child abuse charges after allegedly putting their five-year-old son in an oven to punish him.
Police said the boy was regularly pushed into the oven as a punishment by known sex offender Lavelldo Washington and the boy’s mother Corneisha Wilkerson.
The alleged abuse was discovered after the couple took their two-month-old baby to Vanderbilt Children’s Hospital for a broken leg last year.
Facing trial: Sex offender Lavelldo Washington, left, and his partner Corneisha Wilkerson, right, are facing child abuse charges after allegedly putting their five-year-old son in an oven as a way of punishing him
The parents told hospital staff the child woke up one morning screaming, and they said they thought she had been bitten by an insect, according to police.
Bruises were also found on both the child’s legs, and police said the couple then refused further interviews with hospital staff.
Authorities later discovered that Washington,34, would allegedly discipline the couple’s five-year-old son by placing the child in a non-activated oven at their home in Nashville, Tennessee.
‘Certainly, I’m not an expert on child discipline, but most of the time, appropriate forms are discipline are those things that most folks would know,’ said Metro police Captain Gordon Howey.
‘What if the child had been in the oven and somehow it had turned on?’
Wilkerson, 23, was jailed on $50,000 bond each after a grand jury indictment this week.
Washington, who is a registered sex offender and has been arrested 29 times, was held on the same bond.
Neighbours at the family’s apartment complex said they know them well.
One neighbour said Wilkerson knew was going on, but did nothing to stop the alleged abuse.
‘She knew it was going on, and her kids are endangered by that. Like, they could really just really be more than hurt. They could be dead.
‘No – it’s her fault, too. She should be locked up.’
The couple’s three other children have been placed in care.