Macomb Daily, September 20, 2000

Girl whipped with cord, wears sign saying she was spanked

AP--from the Macomb Daily, Michigan, page 6A

Ann Arbor--A man is accused of whipping his stepdaughter with an electrical cord, then sending her to school with signs saying she'd been spanked.

School officials called Child Protective Services when the 10-year-old girl showed up at Clague Middle School with welts on her body and signs pinned to the front and back of her shirt reading:

"Last night I got a spanking from mom and dad for talking out of turn in class. To my teachers, please feel free to call mom or dad if I'm talking out of turn or acting out in class. Thank you."

The girl also was sent to school with a message saying: "Please sign this note confirming I was I was wearing my bad girl sign."

The girl's note had seven lines for her seven teachers to sign.

The girl's 46-year-old stepfather was charged Saturday with third-degree child abuse, a 2-year misdemeanor. He was freed on bond, with a court hearing set for Sept. 27. He was ordered to have no unsupervised contact with the girl.

Police said the girl's mother had spanked her with a belt after being called into school last Thursday because the child had been loud in class.

She told officers her stepfather came in after she went to bed that night and told her "she was gonna get a whoopin" and let her decide if she wanted it that night or in the morning, the police report said.

The girl also told officers her stepfather whipped her as many as 35 times with an extension cord, with extra slashes for knocking things over and trying to run away, police said.

A detective took photos of welts and cuts across her legs, up and down both arms and on both shoulders, then the girl was taken for medical treatment. The girl was afraid to let officers unpin the signs from her shirt, a police report said.

The child has since been returned to her mother.

The girl told police she had been hit by her stepfather before, but, "it has never been this bad."

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