Couple arrested after forcing child to eat soap
Published by Waleed Fakhroo on October 13, 2009
Palm Bay, Florida — A mother and her boyfriend were jailed over the weekend after Palm Bay police said an 8-year-old girl was forced to eat soap after uttering an obscene word.
The girl, who police said suffered an allergic reaction, has been removed from the couple’s home by the Department of Children and Families, along with her 18-month-old sibling.
Wilfredo Rivera, 41, and Adriyanna Herdener, 32, were charged with neglect of a child and child abuse after police were called to a home in the 2300 block of Shenadoah Drive to investigate the incident.
Both were arrested Friday and face court hearings in early November.
“(The girl) used an expletive and the boyfriend had her eat soap,” said Yvonne Martinez, spokeswoman for the Palm Bay Police Department.
“It caused the girl’s mouth and throat to swell. But they didn’t provide immediate medical care.”
Police said the pair became concerned after the child continued to complain about the pain in her throat after chewing on the soap for 10 minutes.
The mother told police her boyfriend took the girl to a hospital because she, “didn’t want to deal with DCF,” police reported.
The mother also told police that the child wanted to wash her mouth out after eating the soap but that she, “made her clean up the mess first,” according to reports.
Police said the mother initially gave the child a dose of cough medicine and sent her to bed. Hospital staff members contacted police about the case. Police arrived at the home and found the child, who also suffers from asthma, wheezing and with a swollen lip.
The mother and boyfriend were taken to the Palm Bay Police Department for questioning before being transported to the Brevard County Detention Center.
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