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Deputies: Boy was ‘stick skinny’ in abuse case

Posted on: September 25, 2009

Deputies: Boy was ‘stick skinny’ in abuse case

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Gary Grado, Tribune

September 23, 2009 – 4:10PM

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A San Tan Valley woman has been charged with child abuse after deputies found her 14-month-old son so malnourished he couldn’t hold up his head.

The mother, Rhandi Brown, 22, is free on bail after her Sept. 14 arrest.

According to Lt. Tamatha Villar, Pinal County Sheriff’s Office spokeswoman, deputies discovered the baby when they responded on a domestic violence call to the home the woman shares with the child’s father.

Brown allegedly stabbed the child’s father Dec. 18, and she is charged with aggravated assault in that case.

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Villar said the boy weighed only 13 pounds. Deputies at the scene described his arms and legs as “stick skinny,” and he couldn’t hold up his head.

His diaper was so soiled that the smell of urine was overwhelming.

Villar said there was a bottle with curdled milk in the crib with the child, and it appeared that he drank from the bottle and vomited onto his mattress several times.

“Neither parent thought there was a problem,” Villar said.

The parents told investigators they fed the boy stage-three baby food – food for toddlers – and ravioli, despite his being toothless, Villar said.

They said the boy would gum the food until it was soft enough to swallow.

Villar said deputies found no food in the house except for enough baby formula to make four ounces, which the boy guzzled.

The boy was put into the hospital and treated for malnutrition before he was placed in a foster home.

Villar said he gained weight and began to thrive.

Doctors say he is developmentally delayed because of the malnutrition, and it appeared he had never played with toys because he didn’t know what to do with them.

Brown could not immediately be reached for comment.

The father has not been charged with a crime.

Deputies: Boy was ‘stick skinny’ in abuse case | Arizona local news – Chandler, Gilbert, Mesa, Queen Creek, Phoenix, Scottsdale | eastvalleytribune.com | eastvalleytribune.com.

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